DARTFORD got the better of play-off hopefuls Woking in a five-goal thriller on Saturday.

This was a triumph for the players and the management team which had got the tactics spot on to nullify the visitors' dazzling approach.

For half an hour Woking ran the show with bewildering pace and instinctive interchanging of positions.

Darts were under the cosh in the opening stages but the tactic of zonal defence meant defenders marked positions rather than players.

If games were decided by possession rather than goals, Woking should have been out of sight in that opening half-hour.

But all they had to show for their energy was a goal from way out right and a missed penalty.

Not that they did not have shots on target because they did.

But Darts stopper Andrew Young was equal to all they hurled at him.

The back four and the midfield stuck to the script and deserved a 0-0 half-time scoreline.

Instead they went into the break 3-1 to the good.

Woking squandered an opportunity to go in front after being awarded a penalty which Elvis Hammond missed.

Dartford were equally wasteful from the spot when they too were presented with a penalty, Charlie Sheringham placing his effort wide from 12-yards.

On the half hour Woking went ahead when Andy Burgess fired in a free-kick from way outright beyond Young's left shoulder and into the net.

At this stage it was a deserved lead territorially-wise.

Dartford equalised in the 38th minute when they won a corner on the left and skipper Elliot Bradbrook got the vital touch to beat Andy Little.

Two minutes later a smart through ball found Sheringham who made up for the earlier penalty miss by showing neat footwork and a deadly finish to put Dartford in front.

Three minutes after that academy player Jack Pallen showed neat control and footwork to hit home Darts' third.

The second half saw Dartford exercise the same control as had Woking in the first, keeping the visitors on the back foot.

Quite simply Darts defended on the halfway line and pushed Woking back.

Darts could, and should, have added at least three goals but just failed to get the vital touch at the right time.

Woking had their moments but losing Adam Doyle to two yellows didn't help their cause.

The visitors were handed a life-line on 83 minutes when they were awarded their second spot kick of the game following holding in the area.

This time Craig Dobson made no mistake to pull it back to 2-3 from the penalty spot.

Darts became under the pressure but held firm for the final seven minutes and five more added on.

This game was a good advert for Conference South football, watched by the most enthusiastic crowd of the day.

Follow us on Twitter @NewsShopperSprt

Dartford: Young, Burgess, Bonner, Champion, Goodacre, Burns, Noble, Rogers, Sheringham, Pallen (Hayes 72), Bradbrook (Jones 89). Subs not used: Eves, J Burman, Rankin. Att: 1,206.