Hubble at the double to send Worthing to defeat
Connor Hubble struck in each half to send Worthing Football Club crashing to an eighth Ryman League Premier Division defeat in nine matches on Saturday.
Hubble’s brace was enough to help play-off hopefuls Leiston to a 2-0 victory.
Another Worthing loss now sees them drop closer to the Premier Division drop zone after results worked against them this weekend.
Hendon, Burgess Hill and Leatherhead, teams all in the bottom six secured victories, to leave Worthing just six points clear of fourth-bottom Kingstonian and the final relegation spot with six games to go.
Worthing joint manager Gary Elphick admitted it is becoming a concern but he was pleased with his side’s showing at Leiston and said: “I felt it was one of our better displays in recent weeks. We had a great deal of possession but just looked a little toothless upfront.
“I think it’s inevitable when you lose two 20-plus goal strikers that you are going to look light up top.
“Obviously we’ve lost Omar Bugiel, then to have Lloyd Dawes out at the minute is another blow.
“We’re closer to the relegation places than I’d like to be, we’ve just got to start picking up results anyway we can now.
“If that results in us reverting to a different playing style then so be it.”
Tom Cadman was handed his Worthing debut after signing on a loan deal until the end of the season from Brighton & Hove Albion, while Ben Pope returned after eight months out with a dislocated and fractured ankle as a 69th minute substitute.
Hubble broke the deadlock with a free header from six yards out after 12 minutes.
Worthing were so nearly level less than a minute later, only for forward Louis Clark to see his 2-yard strike well saved by Ashlee Jones in the home side’s goal.
A mix-up between Corey Heath and Jack Cook almost allowed Leiston in for their second but Cook recovered to clear the danger five minutes after the restart.
Hubble then wrapped the points up for Leiston 12 minutes from time. After faking a shot to pass Heath, he then slotted past Kieran Thorp.
Worthing joint manager was impressed with Cadman on debut and pleased to see Pope back after such a long lay-off.
He added: “Tom looked quite assured and I was pleased with how he performed on debut.
“We’ve had to bring Ben back a little sooner than I’d have liked. With Omar going and Lloyd’s injury it’s been forced, Ben’s been training well but I just want him to focus on next season and not forcing anything in the games we have left.”
Worthing make the trip to Merstham in the league on Tuesday.
WORTHING: Thorp; Hendon, Heath, Cook, Cadman; Sparks, Wills, O’Neill, Rents; Clark, Summers. Subs: Pope (Summers, 69), Edwards (Sparks, 75), Williamson (Heath, 80), Herbert, Belward.
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