Worthing move off the bottom with draw against Lowestoft Town
Worthing moved off the bottom of the Bostik Premier Division for the first time since August by securing a point with a 0-0 draw against Lowestoft Town.
The home side looked the more likely to score a winner, but it wasn’t to be as the Trawler Boys held on to a share of the spoils.
Burgess Hill Town’s 3-1 defeat at Folkestone Invicta meant the Mackerel Men moved level on points with their Sussex rivals but with a better goal difference.
The hosts made one change to the side that beat the Hillians on Boxing Day as new signing Joe Clarke came in for his debut, replacing the injured Reece Myles-Meekums.
Lucas Covolan was the busier goalkeeper early on and his blushes were spared in the third minute when a goal-kick was intercepted by Nico Cotton whose shot narrowly missed.
Three minutes later Lowestoft captain Ross Jarvis found space ten yards out from a corner but Covolan made an excellent save to claw away his half-volley.
Lowestoft goalkeeper Ben Dudzinski’s was called into action in the 25th minute, making a double save to deny first Kieron Pamment and then Alfie Young from Sam Rents’ corner.
Covolan had saved from Cotton after he cut in from the right for the visitors while Worthing forward Pamment shot straight at Dudzinski as the goalkeepers.
Moments before half-time Darren Budd played in Pamment with an excellent through ball but he shot straight at the onrushing Dudzinski as the sides went in level at the break.
The hosts made a bright start to the second half, Harvey Sparks’ deflected shot dropping just over the bar before Rents curled over from 25 yards following a short corner.
Worthing manager Adam Hinshelwood introduced Jimmy Wild as a 58th minute substitute and three minutes later he fired just over the bar from Sparks’ cut-back.
Fellow substitute Ben Pope fired across the goal in the 78th minute with Wild inches away from providing the finishing touch inside the box.
Lowestoft had the ball in the net ten minutes from time when Shaun Jammani’s knock down set up Matthew Foy who fired into the roof of the net but it was ruled out for offside.
Both sides pressed for a winner and Dudzinski kept Lowestoft in it in the 89th minute when he held onto Budd’s strike from the edge of the box.
Worthing had a string of chances to score a winner in stoppage time as Clarke headed on from Pope’s long throw but Dudzinski claimed.
Wild then flicked on to Pope who raced clear through on goal but shot into the side-netting before Pope turned provider, knocking down to Sparks who dragged wide across goal.
Worthing: Covolan, Colbran, Rents, Budd (c), Hallard (Wild 58’), Young, Parsons, Pamment (Herbert 82’), Clarke, Starkey (Pope 72’), Sparks.
Subs Not Used: Denyer-Schneider, Watson, Herbert.
Booked: Starkey 60’, Parsons 81’.
Lowestoft Town: Dudzinski, Humphreys, Barker, Smith, Cole, Jarvis (c), Zielonka, Foy, Reed, Cotton, Jammani.
Subs Not Used: Hodd Nyadzayo, Wren, Putnins.
Booked: Humphreys 17’, Cotton 72’.