Angels on wrong end of close scoreline at Worthing
Tonbridge again were on the wrong side of a result at Worthing, not often a happy hunting ground, but there was plenty of encouragement, and a great deal of improvement from Saturday as we gallantly went down by the odd goal in five.
It was the third attempt to play the game this season, previous matches were prevented from taking place by the passing of the Queen and a hefty storm, and after conceding four to Bracknell on Saturday it was important Tonbridge made a strong start defensively, so you can only imagine the despair when James Beresford rose above his marker to convert Joel Colbran's cross past Jonny Henly inside the first three minutes.
However the response was a quick one. Former Worthing man Dajon Golding, in probably his best game for the Angels so far, was tripped en route to creating a shooting opportunity just outside the area and Devonte Aransiblia opened his account for the club with a free-kick which took enough of a deflection to deceive Harrison Male in the Worthing goal.
The next fifteen minutes would ultimately win Worthing the game. Worthing scored twice, each resultant of a decision which the Tonbridge players felt went against them. On 16 minutes Scott Wagstaff was deemed to have fouled Worthing's Gills loanee Josh Chambers in the box, a decision the team disputed. Callum Kealy sent Henly the wrong way from the spot to put Worthing ahead again, and just five minutes later Wagstaff fouled Chambers again, this time outside the box, with Tonbridge players convinced Aransibia had been fouled in the build-up. However, take nothing away from Chambers who scored a free-kick of quality so high it would not look out of place in Qatar this month, giving Henly no chance in the Tonbridge goal.
With the Angels now 3-1 down, heads did not drop, Golding forced a good save at the near post, and Turner and Hinds often made runs that had the Worthing defence back-pedalling, to such an extent that many Angels fans did not feel the game was over at the break, even though the Rebels themselves were threatening Tonbridge with pace particularly down their left hand side, giving firstly Hinds, and then Fielding a busy evening.
The second half begun in similar vein for Tonbridge, who were passing well in possession, and pressing well when without the ball, Sonny Miles had a header saved, Jordan Greenidge headed wide from a set piece, Golding was denied again at the near post and a Hinds cross was tipped onto the bar by the keeper, while Worthing too had their opportunities, albeit less so than before the break. White fired off target and Akanbi saw his late effort go over when 4-1 would have killed the game off, but despite the Angels having more possession, Worthing's defence was equal to every Tonbridge attack until the 90th minute when Greenidge prodded home from inches out for his third goal in two games.
Tonbridge pressed for the point in stoppage time but in truth that second goal had come too late, and the Angels came home with nothing against a Worthing side who showed they have adapted very well to National League South football quickly after winning promotion.
Photo: Ian Clear. Greenidge scores late for the Angels