Late drama condemns Raiders to sixth straight defeat

Worthing Raiders Rugby Club slipped to a sixth straight National 2 South defeat following a home 23-20 loss at the hands of Bury St Edmunds this afternoon.

Matt McLean socred a try in Raiders' defeat to Bury St Edmunds. Picture: Stephen Goodger
Matt McLean socred a try in Raiders' defeat to Bury St Edmunds. Picture: Stephen Goodger

Raiders looked on course for a first victory in six matches as they led 20-11 with less than ten minutes left, however a dramatic finale saw Bury turn things around.

Remarkably, Worthing had skipper Liam Perkins, Ryan Storer and Jonathan Whitall sin-binned, as well as conceding two tries in a terrible final few minutes.

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Raiders started in sluggish fashion, with Scott Lyle surging through for the matches first try after 11 minutes. Things got worse for Worthing as Lyle then converted a penalty five minutes later top open up an eight-point advantage.

Worthing were handed a lifeline on 20 minutes as Sean Stapleton was shown a yellow card after failing a clear release on George Montgomery. From the next play, Matt McLean went over, then converted, to leave Raiders just a point behind. Worthing were then ahead for the first time just short of the half-hour. A fine sweeping move saw skipper Perkins pick out Kariym Irving, who went over for a try on debut. McLean’s conversion didn’t have enough on it as Raiders opened up a 12-8 lead.

A strong finish to the half was then complete as McLean fired a penalty over to ensure his side were 15-8 ahead at half-time.

Just as in the first period, Lyle registered the first points of the second firing over a penalty on 45 minutes.

Raiders looked on course for victory following a moment of brilliance from Irving 20 minutes from time. The winger latched onto his own kick before going over for a second time as Worthing lead 20-11.

A nervy finale was then ensured as skipper Perkins was shown ten minutes from the end.

Things got worse less than two minutes later as Bury had a converted penalty try, while Storer was shown a yellow in the aftermath, leaving the travelling side just two-points behind.

A crazy four minute spell was then compete as Whittall was sin-binned to leave Raiders down to 12 for the final seven minutes. Hanging on was always going to be a tricky task and Sam Sterling went over three minutes from time seeing Bury run out 23-20 victors.

RAIDERS: Storer, Harris, Gatford, Barlow, Lake, Smith, Whittall, Perkins; Persson, Leeming, Paddenburg, Richards, Loosmore, Irving, McLean. Replacements: Gearing-Grief, Burns, Ure, Wilcockson, Montgomery.

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