BURNLEY hosted bottom club Bury in appalling conditions last Saturday and secured a bonus point win to take them to fifth place in the league.
The locals opted to experiment with personnel and positions but still had too much pace and skill for the struggling visitors.
Burnley opted to play their high-tempo passing game despite the poor conditions, which meant there were always going to be a lot of mistakes with a wet ball.
Matt Crowley, as early as the fifth minute, had a blistering run which was just short.
Burnley were fleet of foot and thought and found gaps easily. and should have opened their account earlier, but mistimed tackles and, to be fair, a commited Bury defence kept them from scoring.
Ryan Bradley had a good run, taken on by Ed Taylor, who fed young Kyle Snaith, who was bundled into touch.
Burnley opted to take the points and Steve Kent kicked a penalty.
Bury used their slower forwards well in the conditions, driving the ball when they could and taking several Burnley scrums to deny the hosts decent possession.
From a loose ball, Simon Finnan sold a dummy and eventually went over. and Kent added the conversion.
The anticipated points rush didn’t occur as wild passing, knock ons and resolute defence kept Burnley at bay.
Finally, a sniping Matt Higson break linked with Taylor, who went over, and just before the half a good Bradley break netted him a try to make it 22-0.
The second half followed the same pattern and Bury’s forwards proved adept at stealing Burnley’s ball, but a lack of guile and speed meant the home defence was always organised and repelled most attacks.
Bury dominated territorily, but lacked a cutting edge.
A wayward kick was caught by Crowley, who cut through the visitors’ defence with a brilliant run to score under the posts, and Kent added the kick.
Bury’s heads went down slightly, but as Burnley overelaborated they had to wait for their next score.
A flowing move down the backline was recycled and taken on by Matt Calvert, who fed the supporting Kent (pictured) to score Burnley’s fifth try.
Full credit to Bury, who competed well and caused Burnley more problems than their lowly position may have indicated they might, but they went down 34-0.
Tomorrow the second team take centre stage as they play their biggest match for many years, a North West Cup Semi-Final at home in a 3 p.m. kick-off against West Park St Helens, with all support welcome.
This will be followed by a fundraiser for a tour to Gibraltar at 7-30 p.m., £5 a ticket with a live band and curry meal, tickets from 424337.
On Sunday, all juniors are away at Rossendale, except the Under 16s at Tarleton and the Under 19s at home to Birkenhead Park at 2 p.m.