Hillians beat Rebels to reach last four

Rebels captain Matt Hurley
Rebels captain Matt Hurley

WORTHING Football Club exited the Sussex Senior Cup at the quarter-final stage 3-0 at home to Burgess Hill this evening.

The Hillians, who are unbeaten in the Ryman League South Division and won 5-1 in the league at Woodside Road last month, won with first-half goals from Callum Saunders and Rob O’Toole and a Lucas Franzen-Jones strike late on.

Hillians almost went ahead after just six minutes when Toby Pointing’s acrobatic effort from a long throw was brilliantly tipped over by Rebels keeper Jack Fagan.

Worthing’s Curtis Gayler flashed an effort wide on eight minutes, before he fired a 22-yard free kick just wide four minutes later.

Rebels went close again on 18 minutes when Gayler found Omar Bugiel, whose low centre found Ben Pope but his goalbound effort was blocked.

Burgess Hill went ahead on 34 minutes when O’Toole headed on a long ball forward and Saunders brilliantly turned past his man, before clipping the ball home from 15 yards.

Hillians doubled their advantage just six minutes later when Sam Fisk’s long throw was headed on by Joe Keehan and O’Toole flicked the ball home from six yards.

Burgess Hill keeper Matt Morrish had to be alert to keep out Gayler’s well-hit cross shot as the half came to a close.

Rebels made a bright start to the second period as Will Hendon fired wide from 20 yards on 48 minutes, before the hosts had four chances in quick succession just before the hour.

Gayler’s 25-yarder flew high and wide and Rebels’ right-winger then had a snap-shot pushed over by Morrish. From the resulting corner, Bugiel’s header was cleared off the line, before Hendon glanced a header wide just two minutes later.

Morrish was called into action again on 71 minutes when he saved Harvey Sparks’ well-hit 25-yard shot after a corner was only half cleared.

Burgess Hill almost added a third two minutes later but Fagan dived low to push away Keehan’s diving header from Saunders’ free kick.

Hillians did get a third late on when substitute Lucas Franzen-Jones turned home a low free kick from inside the six-yard box.

Burgess Hill join Lewes, Whitehawk and Loxwood in the semi-finals. The draw for the last four will be made at 5.50pm on Saturday.