IT'S been another interesting season for our non-league football teams and the Gazette's sports writers have put our heads together to pick our Team-of-the-Year.

We feel all the players have performed superbly for their clubs, but, once again, it was hard to make a final selection and there are many others who have staked a claim.

MANAGER OF THE YEAR: COLIN WALLINGTON (TIPTREE UNITED) WHEN Colin Wallington took over at Tiptree United in the summer he said he had gone to Chapel Road for one reason - to win promotion to the Ridgeons League premier division.

He achieved precisely that.

The former Maldon boss built a side which won the title with ease, despite losing their first game of the season.

Tiptree also overcame the disappointment of being thrown out of cup competitions for playing ineligible players, as Wallington kept his team focused on their sole objective thereafter.

His straight-talking style and ability to get players from higher divisions to join his Jam-makers revolution has seen him become a sought-after manager, who would be able to attract job offers in the Ryman League with no trouble.

It will be interesting to see if he can take Tiptree up again next season when they will come up against stiffer opposition.

Lee Patterson at Braintree Town also deserves a mention.

DARREN GOULD - Goalkeeper (MALDON TOWN) A MAINSTAY between the sticks for Maldon for some time now, the club would not seem the same without his huge kicks down the field.

Gould is widely regarded as the best keeper in Ryman division one north, with his command of the box and effective distribution giving him an edge over others.

Although he conceded more than he would have liked this season, he still produced a number of match-winning performances which kept Maldon in with a shout of the Ryman League division one north play-offs.

MARK JONES - Left-back (BRAINTREE TOWN) JONES has once again been the picture of consistency for Braintree Town this season.

He played more than 40 games in the Iron's run to the play-offs, defending with typical tenacity and advancing forward to lend support to the attack at any given opportunity.

His absence in Braintree's play-off semi-final second leg defeat at Eastbourne Borough last weekend was one of the more damaging blows in Braintree's injury crisis.

And as his testimonial season draws to a close, Jones can reflect on a personal triumph.

LUKE PASSFIELD - Centre-back (HALSTEAD TOWN) PASSFIELD is still in his teens - but you would not have guessed it judging by his mature performances.

His consistency over the course of the season, when he missed only three matches and was Halstead Town's leading appearance maker in league and cup competitions, helped cushion the blow of losing the influential John Pollard to injury for much of the campaign.

Manager Jody Brown showed how much confidence he has in the young defender by handing him the captain's armband on more than one occasion this season.

And the fact that Passfield is likely to be one of Town's most significant players next season shows just how highly-rated he is.

ROSS CROUCH - Centre-back (STANWAY ROVERS) THE former Colchester United youth-teamer has been a rock at the back for Stanway this season and his commanding presence alongside Luke Passfield will give the Gazette's Team-of-the-Year a similarly solid look.

Rovers started their campaign with some defensive frailties, but the introduction of Crouch was a large part of why their goals against record improved so dramatically, with just four conceded in their last nine games.

Stanway have had plenty of attacking flair in their side this year, but their success has been built on the foundation at the back.

MARTIN CURTIS - Right-back (STANWAY ROVERS) WHAT a season it's been for Curtis.

Over the last few season's his versatility has seen him deployed in numerous roles for Stanway, including up front and on the wing.

A lot of his appearances in Rovers colours have come off the bench, but he has made the right-back berth his own pretty much throughout the campaign that has just gone.

Joint managers Rob Bate and Paul Symes showed faith in him to fill a position that had proved difficult in recent years and Curtis has paid them back handsomely.

LEE OWEN - Left-midfield (TIPTREE UNITED) WHILE Tom English was grabbing the headlines for his scoring exploits at Chapel Road, it was Lee Owen who was making the Jam-makers tick from the middle of the pitch.

Boss Colin Wallington persuaded the former Braintree Town player to drop down to the Ridgeons League from AFC Sudbury in the Ryman League and his extra quality was there for all to see as he sprayed the ball around, creating countless chances for his team-mates.

While he didn't score as many as he maybe should, he still chipped in with seven goals.

Wallington described him as the best player in the league' and apart from a red card near the end of the season, he didn't disappoint.

BRADLEY QUINTON - Central-midfield (BRAINTREE TOWN) QUINTON was voted Player-of-the- Year by his Braintree Town team-mates and is an essential component in our Non-League Team-of- the-Year.

While he has always been combative in central midfield, this season he seems to have added the art of scoring goals to his already polished game, having hit the net 14 times this season.

He was badly missed by Braintree in their play-off semi-final second leg at Eastbourne, following his sending off in the first leg.

And having added coaching to his qualities this season, Quinton's influence is invaluable.

ANGELO HARROP - Right-midfield (STANWAY ROVERS) HARROP has been a shrewd addition to Rovers' line-up this season.

The former Colchester United youth team star came into the squad a few weeks into the season and his creativity and flair on the ball have been an impressive feature that Stanway's fans have come to love this year.

Harrop may have missed the last few weeks of Stanway's campaign, after going to America to work, but his contribution throughout the season merits a place in the Gazette's Team-of-the-Year.

STAFFORD BROWNE - Centre-forward (HEYBRIDGE SWIFTS) HEYBRIDGE were in grave danger of being relegated from the Ryman League premier division this season.

And it would not be too much of an exaggeration to say that if it wasn't for Stafford Browne, they probably would have been.

The 37-year-old not only scored 16 league goals and 24 in all competitions, he amassed 54 appearances - many of which were at centre-half rather than his usual striking position as Swifts endured an injury crisis at the back.

Despite being pressed into action at the other end of the pitch, he still scored vital goals and rounded off the season with a hat-trick in the final fixture against Horsham.

TOM ENGLISH - Centre-forward (TIPTREE UNITED) MANY non-league football followers feel Tom English should be playing a far higher standard than Ridgeons League division one.

And many defences in that league will agree after he scored the goals which have taken Tiptree United to the title.

His 35 league goals have won him the accolade of top-scorer in the division and he notched a further two in cup competions - a tally which would likely have been higher had Tiptree not been thrown out of the cup competitions.

English will now have the chance to pit his wits against meaner defences, but he should have no problem raising his game with his background at a host of professional clubs in his earlier years.

SAM NEWSON - Centre-forward (STANWAY ROVERS) STANWAY'S season has been typified by some electrifying forward play this year and no-one embodies this more than Sam Newson.

Together with twin brother Ben, he arrived back at the Hawthorns at the start of the season and he finished the campaign as the club's top-scorer in the Ridgeons League premier division with 26 strikes.

He has a lethal eye for goal, which, coupled with bags of pace, means the future looks bright.

SUBSTITUTES: Nicky Morgan (Braintree Town), Keith Emmerson (Stanway Rovers), Billy Burgess (Braintree Town), Matt Waters (FC Clacton), Chris Bryan (Halstead Town).