High drama in high winds
By Simon Lord
The Wolfpack were denied a famous victory in deepest Cornwall in the last play of the game. Report below...
High drama in high winds
Bury St Edmunds returned from their longest away trip of the season to Redruth (a mere 774 miles round trip) with two points following a hard fought and exciting match which ended honours even after over seventeen minutes of time added at the end of the game.
Bury kicked off into the gale force wind (45+ mph – force 7 on the Beaufort scale) into Hellfire Corner (note to self – suggest to committee to name one of the Haberden’s corners. As a feature they tend to attract names, Hyde Park, Pooh etc). The first scrum of the day after two minutes was won by Bury and the trend for the Wolfpack to dominate in the set piece commenced.
However it was Redruth who opened the scoring after 13 minutes as Bury were pinged for changing their bind at a maul. The home team full back Aaron Simmonds converted and it was 3 – 0.
The Bury defence was strong all match, playing with clarity and purpose. A crunching tackle from Mikey Graham (who had a great shift) caused Redruth to knock on and from the resulting scrum, Bury won a penalty which was kicked to the corner where the visitors caught and drove, with two further penalties being conceded by the home side. Eventually the pressure was too much and the ball was fired out to Bury full back Cam Ritchie who sidestepped a defender to score in the corner. Nick Perez was inches away with the conversion with a great effort in the windy conditions.
A period of midfield play ensued with both sides defending well. The line out was going well for the visiting team, Will Scholes making a nuisance of himself, stealing the ball at a Redruth throw in which was cleared well into their territory by scrum half Jann Hasenlechner. Bury were down to fourteen men after thirty one minutes when hooker Jordan Argerich was yellow carded for a ‘no arms’ tackle. The penalty following this infraction was converted by Redruth’s Aaron Simmonds and the score was 6-5 to the hosts. Bury scored next when a Redruth forward was penalised for a ‘values of the game’ infringement and Nick Perez’s kick was successful. Just before half-time, after a period of pressure on the Bury five metre line Redruth skipper Richard Brown scored with Simmonds converting with an amazing kick which seemed to deviate 90 degrees with the wind. So the teams went in for half time pasties, the score being 13-8 to the home side.
Bury now had the wind behind them when the second half got under way and spent a considerable amount of time in the hosts 22 and after several penalties, their ten was sent to the sin bin for repeated offending. Will Scholes scored Bury’s second try after a powerful drive and the score was 13-13. Bury continued the tactic of pinning Redruth into the corners with wing Franco Catuogno kicking a Redruth restart a full eighty metres to their five metre line. A short time later, with the referee playing advantage for another penalty, wing Finlay Sharpe caught a beautifully flighted Nick Perez kick, diving at full pelt to catch the ball and score in one movement, a wonderful piece of skill. The subsequent conversion was successful and at 57 minutes played, the score was 13- 20 to the visitors.
A period of relative stalemate ensued with both sides trying to unlock their opponent’s defences, although Bury had the majority of possession. The clock was ticking down and Bury scented a famous victory. However, with Redruth pressuring the Bury line, Franco Catuogno was yellow carded for a dangerous tackle. The hosts could not score due to fantastic defence and Bury cleared. With seconds of the eighty to go, Redruth were awarded a penalty at a scrum on half way and this was the turning point of the match. They kicked into ‘Hellfire Corner’ and an extraordinary period of play resulted. A further Bury sin binning of Ben Cooper for coming in at the side of a maul saw Bury down to thirteen and they valiantly defended their line from the waves of Redruth attacks. Dave Coutts was also yellow carded for an offence at maul time and astonishingly Bury were down to twelve. This led to uncontested scrums, with Redruth scoring having fired the ball to their fly half Kevern who dived in under the posts making converting his own try easy and with 17 minutes 5 seconds over the eighty on the clock, the game ended 20-20much to the delight of the baying home crowd.
So a very exciting game with Bury stopping a run of losses with a great performance at one of the most difficult places in the league to get anything. A solid defensive performance with Bury reducing their penalty count dramatically compared with games of late, showing excellent discipline – a performance for which the team and club should be very proud. It makes the Wolfpack’s next game at home to Clifton an exciting proposition.