Grays succumbed to a 2-1 defeat in a scrappy game at the Racecourse Ground against Wrexham.
Grays played an ambitious 4-3-3 formation but it was to prove their undoing as they left huge spaces in midfield.
In the 4th minute, Christian Smith found himself in acres of space and powered a 25 yard howitzer into the back of the net.
But they let Grays get back into the game and with three targets up front, Glenn Poole dominated from the left.
Fola Onibuje should have scored with the first attack as Jamie Slabber’s dummy let Onibue in but he laboured to get a shot in and Maxwell smothered the shot.
In the 12th minute a sweet Poole cross caused panic in the area, Slabber got a shot on target, took a deflection and looped over Maxwell’s head.
Grays were chaotic and continued to concede fouls at will. Glenn Poole committed a particularly nasty scything tackle on for which he received a yellow card
Wrexham showed neat skills as Jamie McCluskey put Smith through, again in space but his shot went just wide.
Glenn Poole fired an ambitous shot from 40 yards as Onibue and Slabber caused panic with their ungainly styles.
The game opened up but the individual pieces of skill ended with poor final balls.
In the 38th minute Wrexham restored the lead when another goalmouth scramble saw keeper Lloyd Anderson hesitate to come out, Gareth Taylor nodded a header over his head for his eighth goal of the season.
With their sixth and seventh corners coming in the first five minutes of the restart, Wrexham poured on the pressure.
In the 50th minute, Mark Williams nipped in after a Cammy Mawer mistake but the outstretched leg of the faultless Anwar Uddin saved the day.
Grays chances were fleeting: Uddin’s free kick in the 56th minute flashed past Maxwell’s goal. A few minutes later Onibuje stumbled and shot
Wrexham should have made it three as the ball pinballed in the area, Mawer miskicked but Taylor shot wide.
An unfortunate challenge saw Glenn Poole stretchered off and the game held up for ten minutes. The sympathetic applause and prompt attention was a credit to Wrexham.
Sub Sam Cutler put in a great cross from the restart falling to Petar Rnkovic’s feet but he dwelt and was dispossessed.
Both Craig Braham-Barrett and Lloyd Anderson made fine last ditch interceptions as the Dragons tried to extend their lead.
Wrexham saw off the last twenty minutes at a canter as they stroked the ball around and Grays for all their effort have only one win in twelve games.
Report by Michael Casey
Thanks to Your Thurrock for the match report