Wilkins won’t panic about size of squad

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RYMAN LEAGUE

PREMIER DIVISION

Bury Town 1 Canvey Island 0

by Sam Murley at Ram Meadow

BURY Town manager Richard Wilkins refused to panic about the lack of additions at the club, after his threadbare squad clinched a 1-0 win over Canvey Island on Bank Holiday Monday.

In a match in which the visitors arguably enjoyed the clearer opportunities, captain Tom Bullard’s 33rd minute volleyed finish was enough to separate the sides and maintain the Blues unbeaten start to the season.

Striker John Sands, who picked up an injury away to Hendon on Saturday, joined fellow absentee Callum Kearns in the stands as the Ram Meadow outfit named just four substitutes.

However, despite seeing his already small squad depleted further, Wilkins, who was pleased with the result, is remaining calm about the club’s lack of transfer activity.

“People have complained that we haven’t made a host of signings but I would rather have 14 players that are prepared to run through a brick wall for you than players who are not 100 per cent committed,” he said.

“We are a bit light weight at the moment but, as I’ve said before, we will not panic.

“If we were one of the clubs who had an abundance of money then maybe I would have got two or three players in but we have got to make sure we get the right players in.

“We have to be patient and I know we will get the right players in as and when we need them and that is important.

“It wasn’t a classic match but I thought we defended really well and I am delighted with the result.”

In an opening period dominated by the visitors, Canvey had the first chance to break the deadlock after just six minutes. Danny Heale raced onto a ball from the lively Ashley Dumas but saw his first time left foot shot saved down low by Marcus Garnham.

They came even closer to opening the scoring 14 minutes later as Garnham spilled Dumas’ cross at the feet of Bradley Woods-Garness, whose shot would have hit the net had it not been for a brave last ditch block by the impressive Connor Hall.

The hosts were having to withstand an onslaught and the visitors created another good opportunity in the 28th minute. Ryan Edgar drove through the heart of the Bury midfield before feeding Woods-Garness down the right hand side, he in turn cut the ball back for Ashley Miller who stung the palms of Garnham with a thumping right foot shot from the angle of the area.

To Bury’s credit they defended stoutly and after Tom Bullard spurned their first real opening, volleying over on the turn from inside the area after 31 minutes.

The captain made amends just two minutes later with the opener, the Blues first shot on target. Sam Reed picked out an un-marked Bullard in the area from a left sided corner and he made no mistake, volleying a right foot strike through a crowd of players and past Ashley Jones to send the home side in ahead at the break.

Canvey responded strongly after the interval and should have levelled six minutes into the half but Heale fired his left foot shot from just inside the area wildly over the bar.

Somewhat against the run of play, Allicion Blake tested the reactions of Jones, as his attempted cross from the right hand side almost drop into the top corner, before the visitors again came close to levelling in the 77th minute.

Substitute Mitchell Gilbey, in space on the right hand side of the area, rifled in a right foot shot but Garnham stood firm to hold onto the strike.

With just over 10 minutes remaining, Canvey created the final two chances to snatch a share of the spoils with Leon Gordon and Rickie Hayles both denied in quick succession.

The right winger first saw his angled drive from the right hand side pushed round the post by Garnham before, from the resulting corner, Hayles had his goal bound header cleared off the line by Sam Nunn as the 
hosts hung on for a hard fought victory.