Worthing beaten by promotion rivals Dorking Wanderers

Callum Kealy netted for Worthing against Dorking Wanderers. Picture: Stephen Goodger
Callum Kealy netted for Worthing against Dorking Wanderers. Picture: Stephen Goodger

Depleted Worthing missed the chance to move back in the Bostik League Premier Division play-off places with a 4-1 home defeat at the hands of fellow promotion-hopefuls Dorking Wanderers.

Guiseppe Sole's early opener was cancelled out by Callum Kealy's neat leveller - his first goal in nine games.

But two strikes in the space of four second half minutes - plus substitute Reece Hall's late effort - fired Wanderers to a comfortable win at Woodside Road.

Lewis Taylor slotted home a contentious penalty 25 minutes from time then James McShane added another with a soft goal minutes later to swing it in Dorking's favour before Hall added extra gloss to move them up to second.

For Adam Hinshelwood's side, who were without a number of first team regulars through injury, they remain eighth in the table and failed to seize the chance to go back into the division's top five.

Worthing made five changes from the side that were beaten in a thrilling Sussex derby with Lewes last time out.

Goalkeeper Aaron Relf, Darren Budd, Will Miles, Callum Kealy and James Crane came in for the injured quartet of Aarran Racine, David Ajiboye, Kleton Perntreou and Danny Barker, while 16-year-old Jasper Pattenden dropped to the bench after his first senior start against the Rooks.

Worthing were slow to get going and were punished after nine minutes. Joe Clarke gave the ball away to Jason Prior who got onto his own pass before coming out on top in a challenge with goalkeeper Aaron Relf. The former Bognor forward then teed up Sole to fire Wanderers in front.

The hosts remained a little slack in possession but began to pose Dorking some questions.

And Worthing managed to get back on terms on 25 minutes. Ricky Aguiar's pinpoint corner was guided home superbly with a clever left-foot volley from Kealy for his first goal in nine games.

Hinshelwood's side were still sloppy on the ball on occasions and it was quite open affair without either team looking like pulling ahead.

Dorking were then dealt a blow as leading scorer Prior was forced off eight minutes before the break, with Hall coming onto replace him.

Wanderers fired a couple of early warning signs after the restart. James McShane fired well over following a neat move on 50 minutes.

Goalscorer Sole then wriggled away from Clarke too easily before seeing his shot strike the outside of a post five minutes later.

Aguiar's set piece delivery was exceptional and he nearly created another Worthing goal. The youngster's clever chipped free-kick picked out Jalen Jones but he headed wide on the hour.

The game turned back in Dorking's favour four minutes later after Will Miles was adjudged to have tripped Luke Moore in the area, although it looked a harsh penalty. But Taylor fired his spot-kick down the middle to restore Wanderers' lead.

Dorking then added a second goal in the space of four minutes as the visitors took control. McManus latched onto a pass that saw him go clear, cutting inside with his tame shot creeping past Relf.

Worthing looked deflated after two quick goals and Dorking added a fourth late on.

Clarke gave the ball away to allow a quick counter, with substitute Hall firing home from the edge of the area.

WORTHING: Relf; Colbran, Miles, Jones; Crane, Budd, Aguiar, Rance; Pearce, Clarke; Kealy. Subs: Pattenden (Budd, 74), Mthunzi, Skerry (Aguiar, 74), Rents (Rance, 74).