Burgess Hill Town were defeated 0-1 in a cagey Boxing Day derby to Worthing FC.
The tie marked the second time the two sides had played each other in the same week, with the previous result ending in a 2-1 home win for Worthing.
Manager Ian Chapman made seven changes from the previous cup game with new signings Billy Medlock and George Brown on the bench.
The game began in a quiet manner with the only opportunities in the opening 40 minutes falling to Guy Bolton and Leon Redwood’s, whose crosses couldn’t find a player in green. Worthing had their first chance of the game when a free-kick on the edge of the box was met low by keeper Josh James just before half-time.
The game sprung into life at around the hour mark when Omar Bugiel’s half-volley looped over the Hillians crossbar. Worthing hit the bar minutes later when a thundering header was cleared away by the Hill defence.
The introduction of Dan Thompson and Tyrell Richardson-Brown brought a new lease of life into the Hillians attack. Despite this, it was Worthing who took the lead on 68 minutes when Sam Rents free-kick was met by the head of Ross Edwards.
Ian Chapman decided to try one last roll of the dice by bringing on new signing Billy Medlock for his home debut.
The Hillians kept their heads up but failed to have any clear cut chances on goal. When Jack Brivio’s volley from the edge of the box flew over the bar in the 87th minute, which was Burgess Hill’s best chance of the game, it was clear that all three points were going to Worthing on Boxing Day.
Next up, the Hillians are away to Merstham in the Ryman Premier League on New Year’s Eve, kick-off 3pm.