LONDON ONE NORTH
Old Haberdashers 15
Bury St Edmunds 29
Gavin Hogg was left to concede his relief after his side responded from 15-3 down, to secure victory away at Old Haberdashers.
It was The Haberden outfit’s first real scare of defeat this campaign, but a dominant second-half response ensured they maintained their 100 per cent league record.
Hogg admitted his side were caught by suprise by their opponents, but believes important lessons have been learned ahead of tomorrow’s visit of third placed Brentwood (3pm).
“It was unexpected how powerful they were in that first half and they fully deserved their lead,” he said.
“However, I am delighted with the response of the players and we can take away some valuable lessons of what we need to improve on.
“We know Brentwood will be a physical side.
“We will need to match them and have the belief that we can get another victory.”
The hosts seized on a lacklustre Bury start as Butterwick landed three consecutive penalties to put his side in command.
Bury, who have not trailed in a match all season, then sprung into action, scoring a penalty of their own to reduce the deficit.
However, it did not last long as Butterwick had the last say of the first half, adding two further penalties to take the home side 15-3 up at break.
After the interval, Bury attacked from the outset and began to reap the dividends.
A well-worked catch and drive from a lineout saw Jonno Farmer spin off the side and power over.
But Martin’s conversion came back off the post as the score stood at 15-8.
In a scrappy period of play, the game cried out for structure and Kenny Eggars’ introduction quickly made an impact as he ran deep into the opposition half.
However, the home defence held firm, although they were aided and abetted by Bury knock-ons.
Bury finally managed to get a grip on the game. Skipper Matt Eddison proved too powerful in open ground as he brushed off a weak tackle to stroll in by the posts.
Martin’s conversion brought the scores level.
Bury’s fitness and strength began to take effect and, despite some erratic refereeing decisions that confused both sides, they remained patient in attack and stretched the defence.
Finally, enough space was created on the blind side for Matt Page to wriggle through for a seven-point lead.
With less than 10 minutes on the clock, Bury went in search of a fourth and bonus point earning try.
A kickable penalty, which would have made the game safe, was declined, and instead the ball was kicked into touch.
The lineout was won, the ball went into midfield and talisman Eggars stormed over.
Martin’s successful conversion capped off the comeback and sealed victory.