Hogg: Bury must tighten up to maintain winning run

BURSTING THROUGH: Matt Page escapes the attentions of the Beaconsfield defence to score Bury's third try
BURSTING THROUGH: Matt Page escapes the attentions of the Beaconsfield defence to score Bury's third try
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LONDON ONE NORTH

Bury St Edmunds 55

Beaconsfield 20

Bury coach Gavin Hogg admitted his table-topping team needs to tighten up defensively if they are to maintain their unbeaten run.

The Suffolk side racked up their 12th bonus-point win of the season — 23rd consecutive success in all competitions stretching back to January — by defeating a Beaconsfield outfit that looked better than their lowly fourth-bottom position would suggest.

However, The Haberden-based managed to concede their highest number of points in a match this campaign, keeping Hogg on his guard.

“It’s something we’ve spoken about and have got to work on,” said Bury’s head coach. “If you concede 19 or 20 points against the bigger sides, you are going to find yourselves in a battle for 80 minutes.

“We got away with it a little bit against Beaconsfield, but we were playing against a side — with no disrespect intended — who are towards the bottom end of the table.

“It’s something we will have to fine tune over the next three weeks because we have two big games before Christmas against Luton away (December 8) and Diss at home (December 15).”

Despite having to make several changes due to absences, Bury got off to a great start when fly-half Brenton Krammer and centre Pat Harrison kicked behind the Beaconsfield defence to give themselves territory and two more phases handed the home team the space they needed for Krammer to tee up Jono Farmer, who touched down to mark his return from injury inside three minutes.

Harrison’s brute strength helped set up the second try in the 12th minute as he stood strong against a bone-crunching tackle, allowing Phil Gouldie to take a pass and race in.

Although the visitors responded with a penalty, Bury won the resultant kick-off and danced their way through with Matt Page placing the ball down.

For the remainder of the half, Bury seemed intent on making a game of it as Chris Snelling and Will Martin — who scored one of his three first-half conversions — gifted soft tries to the opposition.

Andrew Zair and Dan Wilson benefited, but Bury found their feet again during the break and, aided by two visiting players ending up in the sinbin, they scored five second-half tries.

The first was gifted to Charlie Birrell by the Beaconsfield defence, with some expansive rugby then setting up the simplest of forwards’ tries for Matt Bell, who dived over from no more than a metre.

Martin had found his kicking boots, nailing both conversions and a penalty in between before adding the extras to Ben Scully’s try after a fantastic break from inside their own half by Ben Radmell and substitute Jake Thurlow.

Beaconsfield drove their way through for Fred Witton to pull five points back, but it was Bury who finished the strongest, Farmer powering over for his second try before Ryan Wiggins touched down the score of the game when he chipped over the defence and outsprinted three defenders before picking up the bouncing ball and diving over the line.

Martin’s conversion was the final act of the match as Bury took their league points tally to a maximum of 60 from 12 games.

Bury: Bell, Cracknell, Birrell, Lagudi, farmer, Davis, Bixby, Radmell, Scully, Krammer, Snelling, Page, Harrison, Gouldie, Martin. Rolling subs: Wiggins, Oxborrow, Thurlow.