The city side were always chasing this game after conceding three tries in a depressingly poor first fifteen minutes. Despite a second half revival, which earned a losing bonus point, they could never recover the lost ground and slipped to a third consecutive defeat.
Bury’s Tio Uri, Will Affleck and Mark Kohler punished Canterbury’s poor execution and lack of concentration in that opening burst but, luckily, the conversion attempts were all off target so they were spared further pain.
After those shocks it took time to find any attacking territory but hopes were raised when Ollie Best’s long pass sent Guy Hilton clear for a 26th minute try. Best landed the first of three excellent conversions all from close to the touchline but by half time the city’s side’s continuing unforced errors had undone the good work.
They paid a heavy price as a confident Bury scored twice in as many minutes.
A yawning blindside gap was spotted and ended in a try for Sam Bixby and as soon as the game restarted Kohler intercepted Tom Best’s pass to sprint away for his side’s fifth touchdown. Two conversions from Fraser Honey gave Bury a comfortable 22-point cushion at the break.
Canterbury’s bleak afternoon was summed up as they started the second half with clear intent but coughed up ball when it seemed they might get a second try. Bury swept to the other end, worked an overlap for wing Dwayne Corcoran and Honey’s conversion gave them the look of nailed on winners. For a Canterbury side unsettled by forced changes before the start of the game defeat could have become humiliation. Instead they they lifted their heads and produced their best spell of the match. A catch and drive saw Sam Kenny burrow over the line and Dan Smart, who brought fresh energy to the attack from the bench, pulled off an interception and ran in the try from 80 metres. The job now was to find a bonus point fourth try and although the Bury pack’s
pressure forced a penalty try and a yellow card for Royce Cadman, they did it. In the last move of the game Aiden Moss’s elusive run ensured that Canterbury edged the second half, but that was hardly a consolation.
Canterbury A.Moss, G.Hilton, S.Sterling, T.Best, H.Sayers, O,Best (repl F.Morgan), K.Braithwaite (repl D.Smart), A.Cooper, T.Rogers (repl J.Otto), S.Kenny (repl A.Wake-Smith), R.Cadman, M.Corker, A.Woodward (repl V.Meredith), D.Bailey, M.Cantwell.