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Dorking Wanderers 4 Worthing 2
Posted: 12th September 2017
A Matt Briggs brace set up Dorking Wanderers for victory after a brave young Worthing team took a shock early lead.
Troubled Worthing arrived at Westhumble on the back of seven straight defeats, in a week that has seen the manager resign and key players leave, enforcing the use of youth team players to plug the gaps.
Dorking set out with intent. With just two minutes gone, pacy winger Briggs drifted past the defence into the box before his shot was blocked, and then passed infield foro James McShane to test Worthing’s keeper from the edge of the box.
Wanderers were playing in the Worthing half, so it was against the run of play that the visitors took the lead on 14 minutes. A reverse pass set Rueben Denyer-Schneider free on the left and his precise cross found Ben Pope, unmarked in the box, to head past Dorking’s debutant keeper, Josh Pelling.
With Jerome Beckles imposing himself on midfield, Dorking continued to dominate but now struggled to create clear-cut chances. McShane worked some space but shot well wide, Tom Tolfrey lifted the ball over the bar, and Sol Pinnock robbed the defence of the ball but his shot was a comfortable save for Worthing keeper Lucas Covolan.
“Worthing came to play deep which, with the problems they’ve had, was their only real option,” said Wanderers’ boss Marc White. “So conceding a poor goal was disappointing because it gave them something to defend and we found it difficult to break them down.”
It took two individual moments of brilliance by Briggs to turn the game around.
Just past the half hour, with Dorking’s frustration growing, Beckles sprayed the ball out to the winger, who cut inside and powered a low drive with such ferocity it went past Covolan into the far corner of the net and out the other side – quite literally, a netbuster!
Ten minutes into the second half and it was Briggs again who picked up a loose ball in the Worthing box and, finding himself with time and space, casually powered a shot high into the roof of the Worthing goal for a 2-1 lead.
A goalkeeping error brought breathing space for Wanderers. Covolan jumped to collect a ball into the box but, in the torrential rain, it slipped through his hands and dropped for David Ray to stoop and head into an empty net.
At 3-1, the game should have been safe, but Dorking began to sit back and Worthing enjoyed their best spell of the game. On 86 minutes, a rare moment of confusion at the back gave Lloyd Dawes the opportunity to control the ball well before planting an assured finish into the Wanderers’ net.
Marc White was concerned at the way his team had let their opponents back into the game. “The youngsters Worthing brought in are good lads, but I was disappointed with how we played after going 3-1 up,” he said. “We could have cracked on, but we coasted and invited them on.”
James McShane ensured a Dorking victory on the stroke of 90 minutes. His strike from the edge of the box hit the post, but Gareth Chendlik collected the rebound and unselfishly squared it back to McShane who made no mistake at the second attempt.
Despite picking up a second league win of the season, White insists his team has a long way to go since gaining promotion to the Bostik Premier Division.
He said, “We’re nowhere need finding the stability we want and we’re relying too much on Matt Briggs to get us out of trouble. I told the players that only four or five of them have done enough to cement their places in the team – the rest of the starting places are up for grabs for anyone in the squad who puts in the hard work needed to make progress in this league.”
Dorking FC: Pelling, Sheridan (Dyett 75), Boulter, Ray, Beckles, Pearse, Pinnock, Briggs, Sole (Philpot 80), Tolfrey (Chendlik 64), McShane
Unused Subs: O’Neil, Summerfield