BRIGHTLINGSEA Regent boss Tom Rothery was in philosophical mood after his side's heartbreaking defeat at Haringey Borough.

The title-chasing hosts grabbed a last-gasp winner in Monday's Bostik League premier division contest at Coles Park.

Regent had taken an eighth-minute lead through Billy Hunt and then, agonisingly, Aaron Condon hit the bar just seconds before Haringey's winner.

Rothery said that passage of play highlighted the spectrum of emotions football can give you but, while disappointed to finish empty-handed, he was encouraged by his side's performance against one of the top sides in the division.

"We were excellent in the first half," he said.

"In the second we were under pressure but still managed to hit the bar in the 92nd minute.

"Then we missed the rebound from six yards and a minute later they scored their winner.

"The emotions of football were summed up in that one minute.

"The boys worked so hard - even under pressure they defended manfully, putting their bodies on the line - but even though it hurt to lose, we have to absorb that feeling and move on.

"What it demonstrated once again is that we're becoming a good side.

"We can compete with all the teams in this league and now it's about us using that defeat and performance to keep on growing."

Rothery was forced to make two substitutions due to knocks suffered by Hunt and Jordan Barnett.

He will be hoping both recover in time for Saturday's home match against Merstham.

Regent, starting the night tenth in the table and only three points outside the play-offs, made a dream start after grabbing an eight-minute lead through Hunt.

The club's top-scorer fired home with an unstoppable 25-yarder.

It was an advantage they protected until the 71st minute, when Ralston Gabriel equalised.

Haringey then pushed for a winner and eventually netted again in stoppage time, through Reneil Sappleton.

Regent had defeated basement boys Whitehawk 3-0 at the Taydal Stadium on Saturday.

All the goals came in the second half, with two in the latter stages.

Billy Jones got the ball rolling before Hunt notched twice, in the 77th and 88th minutes.

Meanwhile, Rothery is expecting former loanee Reuben Mudd to impress after joining Thurlow Nunn League side Holland FC.

The striker had been with the R's on a work experience arrangement from Colchester United.

The deal ended on Saturday and Mudd has now agreed a similar move to his former youth team, Holland.

"Reuben’s loan ended on Saturday and I didn’t continue it as I couldn’t get him minutes," said Rothery.

"I advised him to drop down and just play, which I’m glad he’s done.

"He should do well at that level and needs to play senior games to allow his ability to come out.

"The experience will help him in the long term."