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Tonbridge Angels 2
Hinds (59'), Turner (79')
1 Worthing
Wills (22')
Angels celebrate Tariq Hinds' glorious equaliser

Angels repel Rebels

A half time substitution, a cosy chat in the dressing room during the break and a subtle adjustment to formation and Tonbridge Angels came out for the 2nd half looking a completely different side.  Instead of allowing Worthing to totally run the game in that first period, straight from the 46th minute Angels were in their opponent’s faces, making the tackles and often winning those 50/50 balls.   Great credit to Angels Boss, Jay Saunders and his backroom staff for effecting those changes but also the players who clearly took everything on board, and their reward - an exciting win over one of the play off contenders.  

Jordan Greenidge was not fully fit while Devonte Aransibia Jack Wood dropped to the bench.  Captain Sonny Miles was restored to the starting line up and it was a first start for Maidstone Utd loanee Midfielder Bivesh Gurung

Worthing arrived at Longmead with just one previous league defeat on the road and it was easy to see why.  Right from the kick off they took over control with some delightful passing movements and it was no surprise when they took the lead in the 22nd minute through Kane Wills who had been set up by Davide Rodari.  The Rebels certainty didn’t sit on their lead but continued to press their hosts with Chambers and Wills at the heart of proceedings. 

There was the occasional raid by Angels attempting to beat Worthing’s off side trap but often the first touch was poor or Male in the Worthing goal was far too quick off his line and any chance was stifled.  Tonbridge will have been relieved to get to half time just the one goal adrift.

The second half saw a dramatic improvement for the home side with a much more incisive performance and preventing Worthing from running the show as they had done in the first half.  

On 59 minutes with Worthing not quite managing to clear their lines the ball fell to Hinds who volleyed magnificently from outside the area to draw the scores level.  At that stage, no one in the 1163 crowd could have predicted the outcome with both sides giving their all.  It was however the home side who then broke the deadlock in the 79th minute with another quite magnificent strike from Turner following good work by Fagg and Gard. 

There was still plenty of time for Worthing to equalise and despite seeing plenty of the ball they couldn’t break the Angels defence.

Afterwards Saunders on Hinds’ strike said: “People don’t realise how much quality it takes to score a goal like that, it was pure class.”

Published Saturday 4th February 2023 (last updated Sunday 5th February 2023)