O’Sullivan backed to take chance in Bury goal

SAFE HANDS: Neil O'Sullivan has the chance to nail down the number one shirt at Bury
SAFE HANDS: Neil O'Sullivan has the chance to nail down the number one shirt at Bury
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Bury Town manager Ben Chenery has backed Neil O’Sullivan to shine as his number one goalkeeper after Dan Heath took an extended absence from the club, writes Russell Claydon.

Work commitments meant Heath, who had won the race to start ahead of O’Sullivan following his summer transfer from Newmarket Town, has had to take a month-long break from playing for the Blues.

A similar situation 12 months ago, with Nick Punter unable to make mid-week games, led to O’Sullivan taking his chance with both hands with a series of man-of-the-match displays.

And Chenery believes he can do the same again, having helped Bury claim their first clean sheet of the season as Monday’s 1-0 win at Dereham Town, with Ollie Hughes on target in the 24th minute, saw them go second in the Ryman League Division One North table after four unbeaten games.

“Dan had a chat with me last week and he is involved in a coaching business and has got a new contract come through, so needs four weeks off,” said Chenery. “I have said there is no guarantee there will be a place in the team when he comes back and I’ll need to look for some cover.

“Neil has been excellent since then and got our first clean sheet of the season.”

He was pleased with his side’s ability to take a point ‘when not at our best’ in a 1-1 home draw with Great Wakering Rovers on Saturday which saw Bradley Barber’s 41st minute opener levelled by Tony Jacobs 10 minutes after the restart.

Chenery described his side, missing five players on Monday, as ‘excellent’.

Phil Weavers (hip) is set to return for tomorrow’s re-arranged league game with mid-table Ware (3pm) but skipper Barber (knee) is doubtful while Nick Ingram (hamstring) is ruled out. The Blues travel to bottom side Wroxham on Tuesday (7.45pm).

n Bury will travel to holders Lowestoft Town in the first round of the Suffolk FA Premier Cup on October 18 or 19.

n Team Bury (17th), 4-1 losers at home to Dereham Town on Tuesday and 2-0 at Coggeshall on Saturday, travel to Holland FC tomorrow (3pm) before visiting Downham Town in the First Division Knockout Cup on Tuesday (7.45pm).