HARWICH AND PARKESTON defender Dan Clarke felt it was a "massive" milestone to register a first league victory and clean sheet on Saturday.

The Shrimpers got off the mark with a 1-0 victory at Brightlingsea Regent Reserves.

Jordan Heath scored their winning goal and it followed a run of two draws and a defeat, in the early weeks of the season.

Harwich have tasted success in the FA Cup and Essex Senior Cup but Clarke felt it was important to secure a first Thurlow Nunn League victory.

"It was nice to win and keep a clean sheet," said the former Cornard United man.

"The team needed it. It's been a bit of a struggle in the last few weeks but we've stuck together.

"Keeping a clean sheet was massive and will only breed confidence.

"Our start wasn't as we wished, after a good pre-season, but I believe these three points are massive and hopefully we can build on them."

Clarke believes there is strong competition within the squad and knows he has to keep performing if he wants to keep his place.

"We've got a lot of defenders in the squad and the competition's good," said the 27-year-old.

"It keeps everyone on their toes and we all know that if we get an opportunity, we've got to take it.

"We've switched between a three and a four at the back and it's great to have options and competition for places.

"It's very healthy."

Clarke joined in the summer and believes his new club have the potential to push for promotion.

"It's great being involved with a club that have a lot of fans and good support," he said.

"It's a great bunch of lads, too, and hopefully we can kick on from this win.

"Our target is definitely to be up there challenging for those top-four places."

Harwich are back on the road tonight, for a fixture at neighbours HOLLAND FC.

Elsewhere, in the Essex Senior Cup, STANWAY ROVERS have a date with FC CLACTON while WIVENHOE TOWN head to Takeley.

WITHAM TOWN have a home match against Great Wakering Rovers in group six of the Velocity Trophy.