Heartbreak for Bury in thrilling game at Taunton

Scott Lyle had a good game for Bury

Scott Lyle had a good game for Bury - Credit: Archant

National League Two South Taunton Titans 30 Bury St Edmunds 26 A last-gasp try in the seventh minute of injury time denied Bury what would have been an incredible victory.

A fantastic touchline conversion by Scott Lyle to a Chris Lord try, looked to have sealed a dramatic victory for the visitors in the 89th minute. Having played almost the whole of the second half with 14 men following a red card to Emyr Williams, let alone to yellow cards shown to both Sam Sterling and Tom Rock, it had been an incredible rearguard action by Bury that nearly snatched the victory.

Former Premiership player, Ben Russell, was making his debut as a referee at this level of rugby and while Bury may have had no arguments over the three different cards, his award of a penalty try against them did make the visitors feel aggrieved at the final whistle.

The home side dominated the possession charts but it counted for little against a Bury side whose defence was outstanding. An early Kingdom penalty was quickly cancelled out by Scott Lyle to make it 3-3 after seven minutes.

The game quickly fell into a pattern. Taunton launching waves of attacks, Bury soaking up the pressure and then counting with rapier-like quality. A swift counter almost saw Bury take the lead but Sam Bixby did not quite have the legs to outpace the cover.

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A momentary lapse in defence let Taunton centre Popham evade three weak tackles to canter in by the posts. Kingdom’s extras put Taunton 10-3 up. Another chance for the home side was unfortunately brought back for a knock on and Bury regrouped to turn on the pressure and Lyle knocked over another a penalty to reduce arrears.

Kingdom, normally one of the most consistent kickers on the circuit missed a sitter and Bury made the hosts pay.

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Bury were awarded their first scrum on 40 minutes. The ball was whisked away blind, Lord took the ball on and Williams was up in support to burst through the middle of the ruck to run in 20 metres for the try. Lyle added the extras to make it 13-10 to Bury at the interval.

Good work by Bixby earned Bury a penalty and when Bingham was on the end of a high tackle just inside the Taunton half, Lyle yet again was faultless from 45 metres.

A yellow to Sam Sterling made Bury’s task to defend a 16-10 lead tough. That task quickly looked a severe test when Williams, on advice of the linesman, saw red for striking the Taunton scrum half in retaliation to being pulled back. Kingdom hit the penalty from the offence to make it 16-13.

Lyle scored again when Taunton were adjudged to be offside at the restart but Taunton hit back immediately when they made their two man advantage count with a huge overlap to push Graham over in the corner.

Midway through the half and Bury led 19-18. Taunton laid siege to the Bury line and yet somehow the 14 men in Green survived.

A scrum 12 metres out earned Taunton a penalty advantage. The clarets pushed to the line and were inches from scoring in the opposite corner when the ball went wide.

Referee Russell brought them back for another go and even more surprisingly sprinted under the posts at the first time of asking when the seven-men Bury pack skewed against the powerful Taunton eight– Taunton led 25-19. Bury’s man of the match Lyle escaped down the right and when the ball was swung back left, Chris Lord managed to squeeze over in the corner.

Down by a point, Lyle converted from the touchline? The rest they say is history – the clock went into the red, Taunton kept pressing, Bury dead on their feet conceded a penalty.

A kick to the corner saw the home side attack again and again from five metres which eventually had to give way and Gary Kingdom darted through a gap to steal the game for the home side.

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