DIVISION ONE NORTH
North Walsham 13 Bury St Edmunds 25
BURY began their campaign in the best possible style with a bonus-point win on their travels at a North Walsham side they had never previously met in league action.
The opening exchanges quickly showed the contrast in styles. Bury looked to go wide from the outset and were prepared to go through several phases to achieve ground. Walsham, however, looked to their powerful front five to grind their way down field.
The opening score went to the home side when Dewing converted a penalty from in front of the posts.
Bury responded well and only a brave last-ditch tackle prevented Tim Mann from powering in by the corner.
Walsham went back to strength and, from a well-worked catch and drive, the Bury defence was reduced to desperate measures, resulting in Joe Davis being shown a yellow card for not rolling away in the tackle.
Godwin, from Walsham, joined Davis in the sin bin for entering the side of a ruck as the game began to ebb and flow.
Walsham extended their lead when the ball was turned over in midfield and a speculative chip over the top bounced kindly into the hands of Davies-Horne to run unchallenged in by the posts. Dewing converted.
Bury, playing against the wind, crucially reduced the deficit before the break from a glorious counter-attacking try.
Fielding the ball deep in their own 22, they ran the ball back with Josh Walker before skipper Tony Fox made good ground down the middle of the park.
Adam Tawell provided the link to Nick Flexman, a summer recruit from Colchester, who seared through a gap and scored out wide.
Two minutes into the second half, Bury established a lead they did not relinquish.
As Walsham once again made good ground through their forward drives, they overthrew a lineout, allowing Davis to break away.
Young lock Josh Walker was in good support, No 8 Warren Kearney advanced the attack further before passing back to man-of-the-match Walker for a fine try. Brentan Krammer added the extras from wide out for 12-10.
The score lifted Bury and, with centre Kenny Eggars constantly making ground in midfield, Bury scored again.
After Flexman was correctly denied a try for a forward pass, but that only delayed the score as the dependable Walsham scrum went awry under pressure and Bury quickly utilised the turnover for a score in the corner.
Alex Lee, Flexman and player-coach Gavin Hogg combined to set up Walsham old boy Barry Frost.
A Dewing penalty brought the scores back to 17-13, still in Bury’s favour, but they were unable to make any further ground as they conceded a series of penalties to allow Bury to relieve the pressure.
Bury fly-half Brentan Krammer landed a superb 45-metre penalty to restore Bury’s seven-point cushion, and his tactical field kicking hurt the home side.
Young scrum-half Matt Briggs was introduced and he made a promising debut having moved up from West Suffolk College.
Kearney had made one fine break that was hauled down yards short, but he was not to be denied and his first try for the club gave Bury the bonus-point victory.
Once again, Bury’s tenacity in defence forced an error and as tiring bodies failed to react, the No 8 hacked through and collected his own kick to wriggle over.