Bury St Edmunds suffered their heaviest defeat in almost three years at in-form second-placed outfit Tonbridge Juddians in SSE National League Three London and South East on Saturday.
After a closely-fought first half, which Bury shaded 6-5, the home side ran in six second-half tries to overwhelm the visitors 45-11.
David Ormrod, Tim Mann and Aaron Waters were all missing, but Will Martin, Sam Bixby and Matt Bell returned to the side.
The omens did not look good when Tonbridge scored an unconverted try early on, but Bury grabbed the initiative after the early setback and started to push the home side back.
Will Martin landed a straight forward penalty to reduce the arrears and put Bury ahead five minutes before the interval with another simple kick.
However, the hope Bury had gained by going in ahead at the break quickly evaporated as they endured a chastening experience during the second half.
The hosts’ second try of the match came in controversial circumstances as they darted through to touch down after an apparent knock-on before Tanimo Samoa’s pass was intercepted and Tonbridge went 19-6 clear.
When Ricky Jones won the race to Will Martin’s clever kick behind to score Bury’s only try of the match, the Suffolk side were already well out of the game and more clinical finishing settled the result.
It has been a long time since Bury have been on the end of consecutive defeats, especially with the style and manner of the second one.
n Stowmarket – who lost 31-15 at Basildon on Saturday – host Chelmsford in London Two North East tomorrow.
n In Greene King IPA Eastern Counties League Division Two tomorrow, Mildenhall and Red Lodge host Norwich Union, Thetford welcome Felixstowe and Thurston travel to Mistley