KRIS Newby’s reign as Basildon United’s interim player-manager got off to a dream start after an Adam Vyse hat-trick fired the Bees to a 4-2 win over Grays Athletic.

Newby was in the dugout for the first time after Lee Connor decided to walk away from the caretaker manager role on Sunday.

Vyse’s hat-trick, along with Ayo Odukoya’s effort, ensured the Bees climbed away from the Isthmian North drop zone and started 2020 in style despite Tony Stokes’ second half brace.

Vyse came close to giving the Bees the lead midway through the first half as the striker met Conor Mead’s dangerous corner, but he could not keep his header under the crossbar.

Basildon then saw a goal disallowed 10 minutes before the interval.

Mead’s teasing cross evaded Grays goalkeeper Connor Pearce and was converted by Tom Anderson, but the midfielder was booked after being deemed to have turned the ball home with his hand.

However, two goals in the final two minutes of the opening period allowed the Bees to get on the front foot.

Vyse notched the first goal of Newby’s reign by breaking the deadlock.

And Basildon doubled their advantage on the stroke of half-time as Odukoya added his name to the scoresheet by meeting another Mead delivery which the visitors failed to deal with.

However, Grays halved the deficit seven minutes after the interval as Stokes, who counts Concord Rangers and Bowers & Pitsea among his former clubs, converted from the penalty spot.

And Grays were back on level terms just six minutes later as Stokes notched his second goal of the afternoon.

However, Vyse completed his hat-trick and sealed the Bees' victory thanks to two successful efforts from the spot.