Honours even as Rebels draw with Rocks

Rebels' Lloyd Dawes
Rebels' Lloyd Dawes

HONOURS were even this evening as Worthing Football Club drew 2-2 at home to local rivals Bognor Regis in a pre-season friendly.

The Rocks took the lead through Jamie Strong on 31 minutes but Rebels levelled through a classy Connor Cody finish on 42 minutes.

After changing their ten outfield players early in the second half, Bognor went back ahead on 58 minutes through Ryan Morey.

Worthing levelled with five minutes to go when George Hayward fired home at the second attempt after Rocks replacement keeper Ben Richards had denied Brannon O’Neill.

Rebels started the match brightly, with Lloyd Dawes on the left wing particularly lively.

The first chance came on eight minutes when Bognor keeper Chris Winterton bravely saved at the feet of Ben Pope and then Will Berry.

Rebels’ Dan Simmonds then fired a volley just wide from 15 yards after Dawes’ cross from the left was only half-cleared.

The chances continued to come Worthing’s way as Simmonds, on the stretch, shot wide from the edge of the area on 18 minutes, before the striker had a free kick pushed out by Winterton a minute later.

Two minutes later, Simmonds again went close when he headed a Pope cross over at the back post.

Bognor took the lead on 31 minutes when Strong headed home a Darren Wheeler free kick, just moments after Ollie Pearce had failed to connect with a left-wing cross at the near post.

Dawes had an effort tipped over by Winterton two minutes later, before Rebels levelled on 42 minutes.

Cody carried the ball forward from defence and brilliantly fizzed home a side-footed effort from 25 yards past Winterton.

Rocks’ Charlie Oatway flashed an effort across goal at the other end, before Worthing almost took the lead with the final kick of the half but Dawes’ curling free kick from 22 yards came back off the bar.

Rebels keeper Jack Fagan pushed away a fiercly-hit Paul Hinshelwood cross-shot on 53 minutes, before the visitors went back ahead on 58 minutes.

Shortly after changing their ten outfield players, Morey broke from his own half, skipped past a couple of challenges and coolly slotted home from the edge of the area.

Worthing should have been level within two minutes as Simmonds got clean through but clipped the ball too wide when he looked to dink it home and was then unable to turn the ball home.

Rebels equalised for a second time when O’Neill went on a mazy run and his low effort was pushed out by Richards. Bognor’s stopper brilliantly stuck out a leg to keep out Hayward’s first effort, before Hayward smashed home the rebound from close range.