Bury St Edmunds 48 – 23 Wimbledon

Injuries are really crippling Wimbledon at the moment, writes Tony Mann.

With several key players already on the injured list, they were joined during Saturday’s 48-23 defeat by Bury St.Edmunds by lock Andy Hore after just four minutes, followed in the first half by their captain, prop Josh Bayford and flanker Rich Ridley.

Whilst their replacements performed more than adequately, the constant changes couldn’t but disrupt the team’s rhythym, especially in the forwards, where the lineouts and latterly the set scrum were a real problem.

Dons’ backs too struggled for the final half hour, looking distinctly porous – an adjective rarely applied to Dons’ defence.

A penalty goal by Wimbledon’s 10, James Doe, after ten minutes, was the first score in a fast, open and well-refereed match, but soon after, from the first of many lost lineouts, Bury’s wing Corcoran scored his first of what was to be his four tries.

Their fly-half Honey converted and then added a simple penalty conversion.

A series of woeful Wimbledon missed tackles gave Corcoran his second and after Doe had slotted a second penalty for Dons, the Bury pack gave the ball to that man again to score his third, again converted by Honey.

Coming out for the second half 22-6 down, a more determined Dons won a 5m lineout and a powerful drive produced their first try, converted by Doe. Minutes later a break by flanker Steve May, taken on by prop George Beale, yielded a penalty and three more points for Doe, and the margin was reduced to just six points.

But then Bury took back control for the final quarter as errors crept into Dons’ game – and the home team is not one to let their opposition’s errors go unpunished. Their pack surged over for their next try and fullback Lord added another two minutes later, both converted by Honey, as was the next, Corcoran’s fourth.

Lord ran in his second with a few minutes remaining, taking Bury to 48-16., but good ruck ball by the Wimbledon pack, a break by centre Ben Hough and a fine finish by wing Josh Christie produced the final try of the game, converted by Doe, and a less embarrassing scoreline of 48-23.

Hopefully next week will see a more settled Wimbledon side to take on Canterbury at home.

On a much brighter note, Wimbledon II’s on the adjoining pitch overcame a strong Bury II’s to triumph 27-17.