Football: Scowcroft helps net share of the spoils

JAMES Scowcroft’s presence helped Bury Town salvage a deserved share of the spoils - and preserve their unbeaten start to the campaign - in a captivating encounter on Tuesday.

Premier Division

Bury Town 2, Cray Wanderers 2

By Mark Williams at Ram Meadow

JAMES Scowcroft’s presence helped Bury Town salvage a deserved share of the spoils - and preserve their unbeaten start to the campaign - in a captivating encounter on Tuesday.

After coming on as a 60th minute substitute, the former England U-21 and Ipswich Town striker, who signed for the Blues last week on a game-by-game deal, pounced on a low cross from Chris Henderson - forcing Cray defender Mark Willy into diverting the ball into his own net on 88 minutes.

Town poured forward in search of the winner, with the lively Henderson going close. In the dying seconds, fellow winger Scott Chaplin - assisted by Scowcroft - crashed a left-footed effort against a post.

Despite the flurry of late chances for the hosts, Bury boss Richard Wilkins was pleased with a share of the spoils.

“A point was a fair result in the end to what was an exciting game,” he said. “We played some good stuff at times, as did Cray.

“On the negative side, both their goals came from our own mistakes and we do still need to improve some of our decision-making. Without those mistakes, we would have won the game.”

Earlier, the Blues had taken the lead from a well-exectuted corner after 27 minutes. Sam Reed whipped in a low ball, Neil Andrews dummied at the near post and Lee Reed was there to fire the ball home.

Wanderers improved as the half progressed and almost equalised on the stroke of half-time when a Danny Phillips volley rattled the crossbar.

Sam Nunn warmed the hands of Dave King after the break, but Cray were largely having the better of it and deservedly equalised on 55 minutes. A mis-directed header by Tom Bullard fell to the feet of Laurent Hamici, who composed himself, before slotting the ball past Marcus Garnham.

The Blues rallied and after Henderson’s mazey run past three defenders forced a good save from King, Sam Reed flashed a header just wide.

The visitors were creating chances themselves and took the lead after 79 minutes. Henderson was robbed of possession in the middle of the park and within the blink of an eye, full-back Lewis Perkins turned Bullard one way and then the other, before drilling the ball through Garnham.

Scowcroft had already showed glimpses of what is to come with some classy touches and the targetman went close to marking his home debut with a goal when his header drifted just wide.

However, it was he and the rest of his team that had the last laugh in an absorbing clash.

Bury team: Garnham, Short, Coulson, Andrews, Nunn, Bullard, Kearns, Nurse (Scowcroft 60), S Reed, L Reed (Chaplin 75), Henderson.

Man of the match: Chris Henderson. Terrorised the Cray defence with pace and skill.

Attendance: 439.

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