Late drama condemns Raiders to sixth straight defeat

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

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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.

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.

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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