Canvey Island 0, Lowestoft Town 2

Robert Eagle marked his recall to the Lowestoft starting XI with a fine free-kick against Canvey Isl

Robert Eagle marked his recall to the Lowestoft starting XI with a fine free-kick against Canvey Island. - Credit: mb1

Lowestoft Town re-ignited their promotion hopes at Canvey Island thanks to first half goals from Robert Eagle and Jack Defty.

After Thursday's disappointment at home to Thurrock it was imperative the Trawlerboys got back to winning ways as they moved up to third in the table.

Promotion rivals Wealdstone and Concord Rangers both dropped points to help the Blues' cause although league leaders Whitehawk scored a dramatic winner at Kingstonian to ensure the gap between themselves and Lowestoft stayed at 15 points having played fives games more.

Lowestoft made nine changes from the defeat against Thurrock as the management team shuffled their pack to cope with the hectic fixture schedule they face between now and the end of the season.

The Blues reverted to the 4-1-4-1 formation that has served them so well away from home in recent weeks with Dan Gleeson doing an excellent job in front of the back four.

Lowestoft flexed their muscles early on with Jack Defty, recalled to the side at the expense of Hakeem Araba, got to the by-line before pulling the ball back for Chris Henderson, who fired over the bar.

The former Bury man had another chance shortly after when he latched on to Greg Crane's raking pass by Canvey 'keeper Ashlee Jones got down well.

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Lowestoft continued to hold the upper hand with Crane having a headed effort well saved although Canvey almost opened the scoring midway through the half when Bradley Woods-Garness jinked his way past Erkan Okay before firing wide.

Jay Curran then had another presentable chance for the hosts but six minutes before the break Lowestoft got their noses in front.

Henderson's excellent run off the flank was brought to a halt on the edge of the area and from the resulting free-kick Eagle curled home.

It got even better for Lowestoft in the 42nd minute as Defty claimed his 20th goal of the season. The former King's Lynn striker got on the end of Eagle's free kick to nod home and give his side a bit of breathing space.

Canvey came on strong at the start of the second half but Andrew Plummer looked equal to anything the Essex side could throw at him.

Lowestoft tired as the second half wore on as they felt the effects of playing four games in the space of a week but Mitchell remained a rock at the heart of the Blues defence.

Lowestoft could have put the match completely out of Canvey's reach when Erkan Okay superb through ball bisected their defence to put Josh Dawkin, on in place of Henderson, through on goal. However, Jones was quickly off his line to deny the former Norwich City striker.

• Canvey Island: Jones, Miller, Dumas, King, Sands, Orlu, Kavanagh (Mason 74 mins), Dobinson, Woods-Garness (Blackwell 90+ mins), Curran, Chatting (Gilbey 83 mins). Subs; Gilbey, Blackwell, Mason, Blackwell.

• Lowestoft Town: Plummer, Williams, Crane, Mitchell, A Smith, Gleeson, Henderson (Dawkin 78 mins), Okay, Eagle (Fisk 67 mins), Benjamin (L Smith 72 mins), Defty. Subs; Frew, Araba, Fisk, L Smith, Dawkin.

• Referee: Oleksandr Saliy

• Attendance: 331

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