Confidence remains high at Bury
IT'S been a good week at Ram Meadow despite the weather. Last week at this time, although still outwardly hopeful, the feeling around the club was that we had perhaps lost one game too many to still have a realistic chance of challenging for a play off place.
IT'S been a good week at Ram Meadow despite the weather. Last week at this time, although still outwardly hopeful, the feeling around the club was that we had perhaps lost one game too many to still have a realistic chance of challenging for a play off place. But here we are a week and two wins later up there in our best position for months. Yes some of the weekend results went in our favour, and yes we have now played more games than some of our rivals, but the fact remains that our current form is as good and the last two games should have given us the confidence to stay there.
Saturday saw us at Great Wakering on a day when several other games fell foul of the weather. All credit to our hosts for providing a good surface for the game with plenty of grass. Conditions above the ground were not so good with a cold blustery cross wind making good football difficult. After 33 minutes of much ado about nothing, the referee decided to call a temporary halt to proceedings. Whether it was due to boredom or the torrential hailstorm was not clear. Whatever the reason it had the desired effect as within two minutes of the restart Dean Greygooses had made a fine save and Danny Cornwell had contrived to miss the target with only the keeper to beat. We created further half chances before the end of the half, but failed to convert.
We took the lead on 54 minutes when a corner wasn't cleared by the home defence and Gavin Johnson flicked the ball on for Sam Reed to apply the finishing touch.
Dean Greygoose kept us ahead with what I consider to be the save of the season when diving forward to divert a goalbound effort by a disbelieving Great Wakering forward over the bar. The hosts did get on terms a few minutes later when a corner diverted off Gavin Johnson's head into his own net - he really must use more chalk on his forehead
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We regained the lead with just over ten minutes to go when substitute Liam Barrett, with almost his first touch, sent over a perfect cross for Steve Bugg to head home. We continued to push forward but had to be content with the single goal victory.
Snow meant that the scheduled Easter Bank Holiday clash with AFC Sudbury had to be postponed till Tuesday evening.
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Thankfully the crowd was not badly affected with more than 500 souls passing through Bernie's gate, most of them in the final ten minutes before kick off.
After a bright start we found ourselves a goal down after five minutes. Tom Bullard was adjudged to have handled in the box and David Head made no mistake from the spot. We fought back strongly and after missing two good opportunities, we awarded a similarly doubtful penalty for a handling offence. Unfortunately Liam Barrett's spot kick hit the angle of post and bar. After Sudbury had missed a good chance to double their lead, we deservedly equalised after 28 minutes. The speedy Sam Reed got clear of his marker and slotted the ball past Dean Neil. Both sides had further chances each side of half time. Sam Reed shot across goal when well placed and Dean Greygoose saved at the feet of Chris Bacon. Liam Barrett was then denied by a great last ditch tackle when through on goal.
We took the lead on 69 minutes when substitute Lee Reed fed brother Sam, and he raced on to beat Neil. Ten minutes later Sudbury were awarded another penalty when James Rowe was fouled in the box, but this time David Head`s spot kick hit the outside of the post.
Sudbury committed men forward in attack and left spaces at the back. With nearly four minutes of stoppage time played Bury exploited this in a quick break that resulted in Steve Bugg feeding Lee Reed who scored after Neil had blocked his first effort.
This was a fine win in a game that was played in a good spirit, but full of commitment and a credit to both sides and the respective managers.
Team Bury's scheduled home match fell victim to the elements, but they had played a game on the previous Wednesday at Ram Meadow, beating University of Essex by three goals to two. Goals by Serkan Kilikiyan and Nick Middlebrook in the first five minutes looked to have been a platform for a comfortable win, and when Richard gammon scored a third early in the second half it looked to be all over. But the visitors fought back and had got two goals back with 12 minutes to go. Only some desperate defending and good saves by Chris Stacey gave Team Bury a narrow win. They were due to play Dedham Old Boys this Wednesday and then the return game at the University of Essex on Saturday.
The first team should have been pursuing the play off dram at Waltham Abbey today before facing a real “six pointer” at home to Canvey Island next Saturday.
A week is a long time in football as this week has proved, let's hope next week has brought the same success.
Just a final word of congratulations to Suffolk's two representatives in the FA Vase. Let's hope they have both got the results they needed today to take them to Wembley.