Bury aim to bounce back

BURY Town boss Richard Wilkins hopes his side can get straight back to winning ways today in an FA Cup second qualifying round against Gray Athletic.

The newly-promoted Ryman League Premier Division (step three) side’s 23-game unbeaten league run was finally brought to an end on Tuesday night with a 3-0 loss at Canvey Island.

However, a home match against lower level opposition today – Grays demoted from the non-league top-flight to the Ryman Division One North (step four) this summer following financial difficulties – provides the perfect opportunity for the Suffolk side to quickly bounce back though.

And having enjoyed decent FA Cup runs over the last two seasons, Wilkins knows more than anyone what success in the world renowned club competition can do for a team.

“Confidence is a precious commodity in any level of football,” said the former Colchester United midfielder.

“Our unbeaten run came to an end on Tuesday but I haven’t got too many issues with that. The loss was always going to come at some stage seeing as we’ve just moved up a level.

“I am looking for a response from them though obviously. When you’ve just lost for the first time in 24 league games then the best thing to do is follow that up with a win.

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“And I’m a great believer that cup games can enhance your league performances,”

That has certainly been the case in recent seasons.

Bury reached the first round proper of the FA Cup in 2008/09 before eventually losing 4-2 at Blue Square South side Alfreton Town. They then went on to narrowly miss out on the Southern League Division One Midlands (step four) play-offs.

Last season Wilkins’ boys came agonisingly close to making the first round again when a last minute goal saw them crash out at the fourth qualifying round stage at Oxford City. Following that they stormed the division to gain promotion.”

– Full story in today’s EADT.

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