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Down to the wire

25 April 2015

Shakers must wait until the final game of the season to learn their outcome

Bury secured a 2-0 win over AFC Wimbledon on Saturday afternoon to keep alive their hopes of automatic promotion to SkyBet League One.

 

Goals from Tom Soares and Ryan Lowe secured the three points for the Shakers, who head into Saturday’s game against Tranmere with a chance of sealing the third automatic promotion place if results go their way.

 

David Flitcroft made two changes from the starting eleven that lost against Southend on Tuesday with Craig Jones and Hallam Hope replacing Danny Mayor and Ryan Lowe.

 

The away side started on top and tested Nick Pope twice within the opening seven minutes of the game. Both chances fell to winger Sean Rigg as he saw the Charlton loanee deny him one-on-one before Pope blocked his half volley from close range after being set up by Adebayo Akinfenwa.

 

The first yellow card of the game was shown by referee Geoff Eltringham in the 26th as Jack Smith was booked for AFC Wimbledon after preventing Andrew Tutte from setting up a counter attack.

 

The Shakers took the lead seven minutes as Tom Soares headed in his seventh goal of the season. Chris Hussey swung a corner to the near post and the former Crystal Palace midfielder rose above his marker to head into the far corner to give Bury a 1-0 lead.

 

Nick Pope was the busier of the two goalkeepers in the first half and he was called into action again in the 37th minute. Rigg was the man he denied again as he attempted to sneak a shot in the near post but Pope pulled off a fantastic one handed save to palm his effort away.

 

Shortly before half time the Charlton loanee nearly got an assist after his long goal kick evaded the AFC Wimbledon defence, but Danny Nardiello’s audacious lob bounced back into play off the post with Shea beaten and the danger was cleared.

 

The Shakers had an impressive start to the second half and created a chance within the first minute of the restart. Tom Soares showed good footwork in the corner to create space for himself before cutting back for Andrew Tutte, whose shot was just over James Shea’s bar.

 

The away side were looking for a way back into the game and came close to an equaliser in the 48th minute but Adedeji Oshilaja headed wide from from George Francomb’s corner.

 

Rigg was proving to be AFC Wimbledon’s key man and had another chance to add his name to the score sheet in the 56th minute. Adebayo Akinfenwa flicked on for the winger before Rigg got a shot away, only to see it hit the side netting and go out for a goal kick.

 

David Flitcroft made his final two changes eight minutes apart as, first, Ryan Lowe replaced Hallam Hope before Nicky Adams came on for Joe Riley.

 

The latter had an immediate impact as he whipped a cross into the box for Danny Nardiello to latch onto, but he saw his header flash wide of the post and out for a goal kick.

 

Fellow substitute Lowe then sealed the three points in the 76th after being set-up by Tom Soares. A cross field ball was intercepted by Soares and he played in Lowe, who took a few touches to set himself before calmly slotting past James Shea in the AFC Wimbledon goal to double Bury’s advantage.

 

The game seemed to be killed off after the second Shakers goal and the home side were able to see out the rest of the game to secure the three points and move up to 4th in SkyBet League Two. The final automatic promotion place will be decided on the final day of the regular season with 3rd place Southend visiting the Globe Arena to take on Morecambe, Bury travelling to already relegated Tranmere and Wycombe making the journey to Northampton.


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