Worthing's perfect start in the Bostik League Premier Division was ended as they were held by resilient rivals Burgess Hill Town at Woodside Road this afternoon.
Substitute James Crane and David Ajiboye hit the woodwork with Worthing dominant in the second half but there was no way through as it ended 0-0 in front of a bumper crowd of 1,189.
Worthing welcomed near neighbours Hillians for a bank holiday derby on the back of three successive wins to start the season but Adam Hinshelwood's side would come up short in their bid for a fourth.
Burgess Hill included former Worthing trio Tom Cadman, Ben Pope and Kieron Pamment from the start, while ex-player-manager Gary Elphick made a return to his former club in defence.
Jared Rance went close moments before the break but other than that it proved to be an uneventful first 45 minutes.
Worthing were much-improved after the restart and just could not find a way through.
Alex Parsons skied a rebound moments in to the second half, with Worthing on the offensive for much of it.
Substitute Crane, thrown on after an hour, saw a later header come back out off the crossbar, while frontman David Ajiboye rattled the woodwork in stoppage-time as Hillians held on for a 0-0 draw.
Worthing, who are third in the table after the stalemate, will be hoping for better fortune when they travel to Haringey Borough on Saturday.
WORTHING: Covolan; Colbran, Racine, Young; Parsons, Barker, Budd, Rance; Ajiboye, Starkey; Kealy. Subs: Crane (Colbran, 63), Skerry (Barker, 85), Relf, Rents, Edwards.
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