Clitheroe’s excellent league form hit the buffers at Bury on a disappointing afternoon as they lost 32-14.
The game kicked off on a decent surface considering the recent weather, and Bury dominated early possession and territory.
The hosts’ back line looked dangerous, and it was not unexpected when a penalty try was awarded following an attack down the wing.
Clitheroe needed to sort out their game plan, and eventually they gained more possession by going through the phases with the forwards, as Pate and Graves consistently got over the gain line.
Captain Will Dickenson led from the front, and following a period of pressure on the line, Bury conceded multiple penalties.
Clitheroe elected for the scrum, pushed over the Bury pack, and Eagle touched down. Cuddy slotted the extras and scores were level.
Clitheroe then allowed the Bury number seven to break three tackles and waltz over the line to score an easy try. The extras were added, and another penalty, and Clitheroe trailed 17-7.
The Clitheroe forward pack again came back at Bury.
Good carries by Rigby and Chamberlain enabled the visitors to exert pressure, and again the Clitheroe eight pushed over their counterparts for another try, with Eagle finishing the job. Extras were added to make it 17-14 at half-time.
Spence replaced the injured Shorthouse, and play resumed with Clitheroe gaining early territorial pressure. coach Getty bulldozed his way through defenders, but Clitheroe were unable to get their back line going.
Another scrum sawmore pressure, with the Bury pack going backwards, and it seemed that Clitheroe would score. Inexplicably the referee stopped the game and reset the scrum, which resulted in an infringement by a Clitheroe player and pressure was lost.
And from that point Clitheroe seemed to lose their plan and discipline. Eentually Floyd transgressed and received 10 mins in the bin. Another penalty was added and the game was slipping away.
Bury put the ball through the hands and touched down in the corner, despite the excellent James Dickenson putting the Bury player clearly into touch. The extras were added and another try conceded at the end rounded off a very disappointing day.