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Bury Foxes win battle for Suffolk rugby supremacy

PUBLISHED: 12:55 05 December 2017 | UPDATED: 12:55 05 December 2017

Steph Durrant opens the scoring for Bury in their win at Woodbridge. Picture: SIMON BALLARD

Steph Durrant opens the scoring for Bury in their win at Woodbridge. Picture: SIMON BALLARD

Archant

Women’s National Championship East 1

Woodbridge Amazons 5

Bury Foxes 22

This all Suffolk league fixture pitted a young up-and-coming Bury side with this season’s established and promising contenders, the Woodbridge Amazons.

Both sides have dispatched the other Suffolk outfit, Southwold Swallows with consummate ease in the past few weeks, the Seasiders still reeling after relegation, and this match up promised plenty.

The visitors began the brighter, as Bury’s speedy back division looked a handful. Early pressure resulted in a try for Stephanie Durrant after quick hands forged an overlap. Danni Lee missed the conversion, so it was 5-0 Bury.

Bury's Danni Lee is forced into touch by Woodbridge's Tor Felstein. Picture: SIMON BALLARD Bury's Danni Lee is forced into touch by Woodbridge's Tor Felstein. Picture: SIMON BALLARD

Woodbridge hit back and enjoyed a period of possession. Errors however, led to turnovers and no real scoring opportunities emerged.

Bury forced their way up-field and when a clearance kick was charged down, it was the Foxes’ Holly Fifield that reacted the quickest to drop on the bobbling ball for her side’s second try.

Bury's EJ Stearn looks to release as she's tackled at Woodbridge. Picture: SIMON BALLARD Bury's EJ Stearn looks to release as she's tackled at Woodbridge. Picture: SIMON BALLARD

Ex-Amazon EJ Stearn was then allowed to waltz through tackles for a third try before the half and the sides turned around with the visitors firmly in charge, 15-0 up.

But if ever a game can be described as a “tale of two halves” then this was it!

Woodbridge's Carmel Leak on the charge against Bury. Picture: SIMON BALLARD Woodbridge's Carmel Leak on the charge against Bury. Picture: SIMON BALLARD

The Amazons came out for the second half and played as though their lives depended on it.

Bury were forced to defend for long periods as wave after wave of Woodbridge pressure threatened the try line. Prop Beth Kinlan and Centre Beth Clapson were both held up in goal, and a score looked imminent.

Woodbridge win a line-out against Bury. Picture: SIMON BALLARD Woodbridge win a line-out against Bury. Picture: SIMON BALLARD

A score did come, but it was a length of the field breakaway from a Bury winger! Lee converted her fourth attempt and advanced the score to 22-0.

Rather than accept defeat, the Amazons poured forward again. Scrum half Morven McAlpine was everywhere, linking forwards and backs in attack.

Robyn Gordon scored for Woodbridge in their defeat to Bury. Picture: SIMON BALLARD Robyn Gordon scored for Woodbridge in their defeat to Bury. Picture: SIMON BALLARD

Eventually a try came as drive after drive from the pack created space outside for Robyn Gordon to touch down.

Despite the score-line, the second half performance alone proved the Amazons are full of heart, while the victorious visitors from up the A14 proved they may be a new side, but they’re already a force in Suffolk rugby.

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