Bury Town captain apologises for seeing red in final
Ollie Fenn has apologised to Bury Town’s players and supporters for ‘letting them down’ after he allowed the red mist to descend in Wednesday’s Suffolk Premier Cup Final defeat to Leiston.
The 29-year-old former Ipswich Town trainee, who has been wearing the captain’s armband since February in the absence of injured Bradley Barber, was given his marching orders on the stroke of half-time for violent conduct following a clash with Byron Lawrence which sparked a melee.
But he denies landing a punch on his opponent before referee George Laflin decided to show him a straight red card for violent conduct, while Lawrence received just a yellow card for his part in the altercation, which broke out after the pair landed on the floor together following a header near the edge of the Leiston penalty area.
Bury were already trailing 2-0 at that point, but with 10 men against a higher-league outfit, it left them facing a mountain to climb, with Leiston adding a further goal despite a spirited second half from Ben Chenery’s charges, to lose 3-0.
Fenn said: “I just thought it was six of one and half-a-dozen of another, really.
“Obviously the ref has to make a decision in an instant, so it is a difficult one.
“Looking back you would act differently. It doesn’t help when all the players come in, but you see it all the time.
“It is a difficult job for the referee, so I can’t blame him.
“It is something I have to stand accountable for, so I apologise to the lads.
“At half-time and again at full-time, I have let them down and I felt we had a chance to go on and get something.”
Of allegations he punched Lawrence, he said: “People are going to say what they want but I’m not the sort of player to throw a punch.
“There was a bit of grappling on the floor, or whatever, and then people start to throw bodies in, but I certainly didn’t throw a punch.”
He added: “I apologise to the fans as well. You want them to come here and enjoy it. I think they did but they are going to enjoy it more if we win.
“They have been excellent and we really appreciate the support, which the boys showed at the end.
“We hope they can come back next year and we will look to give them something to cheer about.”