Bury Town defender backs team to defeat Leiston in Suffolk Premier Cup semi-final

Adam Bailey-Dennis, right

Adam Bailey-Dennis, right - Credit: Archant

Towering Bury Town defender Adam Bailey-Dennis believes Leiston face a tall order to reach the Suffolk Premier Cup Final.

The Ryman League Premier Division rivals face-off in one of the competition’s two semi-finals, at AFC Sudbury tonight, having earned a win apiece from their league encounters this season.

In August, Bailey-Dennis was part of a rampant visiting Bury team that brushed aside Leiston 4-0, but was left kicking his heels in the return fixture a month ago, a four-game suspension ruling him out of the game that Steve Ball’s men won 2-0.

The two teams have met at this stage of the competition for the last two years, with Bury winning on both occasions and Bailey-Dennis’ possible return would further strengthen their chances of making it three in a row.

The former Braintree defender certainly fancies the chances of the men from Ram Meadow and predicts Bury, who will be missing the suspended Seb Dunbar and Joe Whight, will be a tougher nut to crack than the one that lost to Leiston on February 4.

“From what I have seen of Leiston, I fancy our chances of winning the game,” said Bailey-Dennis, whose suspension has lasted six-and-a-half weeks, as a result of the bad weather.

“No disrespect, but when Leiston came to our place last month, our tallest player was probably Miles Smith at five foot nine and they scored from two set-pieces.

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“Myself and Bully (skipper Tom Bullard) were missing and they could only score from two set-pieces. They did not score in open play.

He added: “It’s a great feeling to be back in contention. My suspension should have run over two footballing weeks but the bad weather means it’s been six-and-a-half weeks since I last played and I have been kicking and heading every ball in the stands.”

Should Bailey-Dennis return, his inclusion will boost a team that have lost four of their last five league games, following one defeat in their previous 13.

That recent run has seen them drop off the pace in the league – they are now 11 points off the final play-off place. Promotion remains an ambition, but Bailey-Dennis is under no illusions how important tonight’s game is.

“It’s always a big game against Leiston and it’s a derby, although I’ve probably not played in a derby where the two teams have been further apart,” said Bailey-Dennis.

“It’s a game that is important to the players, the management, the fans and the chairman and everyone wants to win. It doesn’t matter what competition it is.

“Leiston may be a bit fresher, having played at the weekend (Bury’s game was postponed) but it’s usually a good surface at Sudbury, you can get the ball down and play, and hopefully it will be a good game.”

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