Town in eight-goal thriller

Bury Town 4 Ipswich Reserves 4EXPERIENCED Town defender John McGreal continued on the recovery trail with just over an hour of action at Ram Meadow on Saturday night.

Bury Town 4 Ipswich Reserves 4

EXPERIENCED Town defender John McGreal continued on the recovery trail with just over an hour of action at Ram Meadow on Saturday night.

He has been battling against a knee problem since last December.

The former Tranmere man played his part in a cracking game that was the testimonial match for Bury's Trevor Collins.

Collins, 32, first joined Bury 19 years ago, playing 11 seasons for the club in total with spells at other clubs including Colchester United youth team. He made his first-team debut for Bury as a substitute for Tony Hall against Brantham United in the Border League before going on to make almost 400 appearances.

The opening goal was set up by Steve McGavin, playing in a right-wing role. His cross was met by Ian Stringfellow after just seven minutes.

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Lively Sam Morrow forced an own goal to level the scores after ten minutes, but Ipswich were soon behind again when Stringfellow pounced on a gaffe by Gerard Nash to bang in a shot off a post.

Matt Bloomfield hit a cracking second equaliser with a low drive from 22 yards to beat the impressive young Bury keeper Kevin Bugg.

Morrow was rewarded for his efforts after finishing a neat move. The Irishman had earlier been denied twice by Bugg and later hit a post.

Former Town and Colchester United star McGavin, a long-time friend and playing partner of Collins, got Bury back in the game with a wonderful 25-yard free-kick on 33 minutes which dipped over the wall.

Substitute keeper Paul Cudworth got away with handling outside his area just after the break but Nabil Abidallah brilliantly fired the clearance back over the defence from almost 40 yards to give Ipswich the lead.

It was fitting when Collins popped up with his header on for Clarke to level the scores, although he also hit a spectacular volley over the bar. It was a fair result for an entertaining and eventful afternoon played in a superb spirit.

Bury Town: Bugg, Miller, Crown, Ince, Thompson, Eady, Denniss, Collins, McGavin, Stringfellow and Deeks. Substitutes Cudworth, McAndrew, Clarke, Evans, Newman, Proctor, Snell, Parker and Wilson.

Ipswich Town XI: Price, Mitchell, Hogg, Bloomfield (Robinson, 60) Nash, McGreal (Barron, 63), Abidallah (Synott, 74), Kamara, Morrow, Craig and Atay (Flack, 63) Substitutes not used: Robinson, Peat, Synott, Reid and Manning

Referees: Trevor Pollard/Mike McPherson.

Attendance: 1,406.