Hogg hails his unbeaten Bury stars after perfect campaign

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LONDON ONE NORTH

Rochford Hundred 0

Bury St Edmunds 66

Bury St Edmunds’ coach Gavin Hogg has saluted his players after they capped off the season in style to seal a perfect unbeaten campaign.

Facing an already relegated Rochford side, victory rarely looked in doubt as Bury’s superior strength in the scrum and pace on the wings, proved too much for the hosts, resulting in 10 tries with Will Martin adding the extras in eight of those.

And after successfully winning all 26 league games, which started with a 99-0 success over the same opponents in September, Hogg hailed the effort of his squad to accomplish such a rare achievement.

“During the season we thought it could be possible, but it is still such a massive achievement to turn up every game and turn teams over the way we have,” he said.

“In the big games the guys have been superb and that is credit to them and hopefully stands us in good stead for next year knowing we have to keep up that level of performance. We set those high standards from an early stage and maintained that, which is quite brilliant and credit to this club.”

Within the opening moments of the match, Bury’s superior pedigree was clear as they opened the scoring after just five minutes.

A flowing move saw Ben Scully release Sam Bixby through the middle of the pitch, who in turn fed Ben Radmall to crash over, Martin adding the conversion.

Just moments later, they found their way through again as Tanimo Samoa broke free of the pack before superbly finding Kenny Eggars to score the first of his four tries, again Martin successful with the conversion.

Rochford tried to respond but their inability to build a structured attack cost them, with one such interception allowing Scully to gather and score with ease.

Before long it was 28-0, Aaron Waters superbly dominating the line-out to give Eggars the opportunity to add his second, before the same player extended the advantage further, capitalising on an inexplicable chipped attempt by Matt Stewart, to intercept and race clear.

There was just enough time before the break for Bury to add a sixth try, this time captain Matt Eddison with the simplest of tries down by the posts following another free-flowing attack, Martin again consistent with the simple kick, for a half-time 42-0 lead.

The second-half did not quite match the first for intensity but the visitors still managed to add a further four tries.

The first resulted from a powerful run by Waters through the centre, before offloading to Martin who released Krammer to crash over.

Shortly after, Bury added to the scoreboard again, this time Ryan Wiggins doing superbly to scoop up a somewhat wayward pass from Martin, before diving over, with Martin missing his first conversion, the score moved to 54-0.

Bury were then reduced to 14 men after Phil Gouldie had lifted his opponent off the ground in the tackle but it would prove to make little difference to outcome of the match as the visitors adjusted to their disadvantage with relative ease.

Somewhat inevitably it was Eggars who got Bury back on their way. Martin chipped over the top and after pressuring the Rochford defence, Eggars calmly snatched the ball from Rob Prior to collect his fourth and final try of the afternoon, Martin successfully slotting the simple conversion between the posts.

With the clock running down there was just enough time for one last play and the visitors were not in the mood to waste it.

From a lineout in the far left corner, Bury’s forwards gathered round to surge their way towards the line, resulting in Radmall emerging from a heap of bodies to be credited with the try and cap off a simply remarkable season.

n Bury players Sean Davis, Sam Bixby, Barry Aluvanze and Rob Duchesne were among the Eastern Counties squad that secured a RFU National Under-20s Shield final place, following a comfortable 62-17 semi-final success over Cambridge University.

n Bury Colts won two of their five games and drew one after entering a team into the Eastern Counties Sevens Competition, enjoyed differing success in the tournamnet.