A much improved first half display gave Bury a sufficient cushion to withstand a battling second half performance from the hosts!
Updated 12:33 - 1 Oct 2017 by Mark Wapshott
Bury went some way to banishing the demons of last weeks shocking start to the season! It was by no means a complete performance, but having conceded a half century 7 days earlier, it was a massive morale booster for this new side to win on their first ever visit to Coventry.
After a nervy start, Bury slowly but surely went on to control the first half and by the break were in complete control with a 20 – 3 lead.
McBride, who had a fine game at Fly Half was orchestrating things well, and his fine deep kick was chased well. A hurried Broadstreet clearance was returned with interest by Scholes and Bury then stayed patient, recycling the ball over and over again until Prop Forward Coutts was bundled over by his fellow forwards. McBride added the extras and Bury were 7 points to the good on 14 minutes.
Broadstreet responded well from the restart going on the offensive and forcing Bury into conceding a penalty in front of the sticks. It was unclear as to what the penalty was for but Chapman had no concerns and easily dissected the posts.
For the remainder of the half Bury dominated proceedings… Corcoran looked to have scored in the left hand corner but on advice of the touch judge the referee deemed he had lost control of the ball whilst trying to ground the ball. No matter, Bury stayed on the offensive and McBride landed a straight forward penalty after the home side were penalised for not rolling away quickly enough in the tackle.
Scholes was prominent in a Bury forward performance which was so much better than the previous week. Bury were asking all the questions now.., kicks were chased with verve, attacks were varied and confidence was noticeably rising! Corcoran made up for his earlier error when he raced onto a clever kick behind the home defence to touch down. McBride landed a superb touchline conversion to improve the lead and then just before the break slotted a superb 35 metre penalty after Broadstreet were punished for having a man catch the ball when in front of the play.
BROADSTREET 3 BURY 20
It had been a good half for Bury… Whilst the scrums had creaked a little, Sam Bixby’s arrows in the lineout had been spot on, the back row had gained the ascendancy and in midfield Kohler and in particular Rouse looked very dangerous.
So nothing to worry about then…
Broadstreet opened the half clearly fired up and signalling their intent to spread the ball wide at the earliest opportunity. Fly Half Chapman was proving an influential player and a high tackle on the 10 afforded him the chance to get back up and land a simple penalty.
Not the start Bury wanted, and by 5 minutes Chapman had landed his second penalty after Bury were penalised for having players not retreating from McBrides high kick.
Broadstreet now had their tales up and as Bury continued to fall foul of the official they were forced to spend long periods defending in their own half. What was noticeably different from last week however, was the commitment and desire shown by the Wolfpack in defence.
Broadstreet clearly had the edge in the set piece but Chapman missed the chance to narrow the gap further when he skewed his penalty attempt wide after a scrum infringement.
In the line out it was a different matter and Bury once again stopped a promising home attack by stealing the line out. A swift counter attack allowed Bury to finally create some sustained pressure on the “Street” line. A penalty was earned but this time it was McBride’s turn to drag his kick wide.
With 20 minutes to go it was clearly the home side in the ascendancy. Bury were increasingly forced into scrambling defence with Stapleton often to the fore making crucial tackles or turning the ball over at the break down. Where Bury let themselves down was after having won the ball, they were quick to then give the ball back through some poor option taking…
Pressure inevitably told and with 7 minutes remaining the Green n Golds line was breached! Chapman again dragged the Bury defence first one way then the next and when finally the defenders ran out, left wing Scott Truelove managed to squeeze over in the corner.
With the conversion expertly landed it brought the scores to 20 – 16 and next try wins!
It made for a nervy final few minutes…The error count from both sides went up as players sensed the chance to be the hero….or villain! McBride had a long range penalty attempt slide by the posts and Chapman missed a speculative drop goal.
As the clock ticked long into injury time it was Broadstreet camped in the Bury 22 after the visitors had twice ruined the chance to close the game out by coughing up possession. Fittingly it was Stapleton that got himself over a tackle to force Broadstreet into conceding a penalty with McBride gleefully kicked off the park!
This is a much changed side from last season and clearly will take time to bed in… Today was about putting right some of the wrongs of the previous week and getting a result…to that end it was mission accomplished! The fast flowing rugby will come in time.