BURY maintained their four-point cushion above the League Two drop zone with a plucky draw at Newport County.

The Shakers had the better of the chances with veteran striker Clive Platt missing an open goal with a close-range header in the first half.

But while David Flitcroft’s side left South Wales without a win in their last seven matches, they remain in 19th place in the table, just out of danger ahead of Saturday’s head-to-head at second-bottom Northampton Town.

The slick passing of Saturday’s draw at home to Dagenham was never going to be replicated on a pitch torn up by rugby side Gwent Dragons.

And Bury noticeably switched tactics, going long at every opportunity in the opening half.

But when they were able to get the ball down in the final third, Danny Mayor and Chris Hussey created havoc with a string of searching crosses from the left.

Craig Jones was the main recipient, wasting two decent chances unmarked at the far post in the first 10 minutes.

His first effort was blasted across goal from the edge of the box, before the midfielder miscontrolled the ball from six yards after it hit a bobble in front of him with the goal gaping.

Mayor was the first and only Bury player of the half to test home keeper Ian McLoughlin, cutting inside from the left and curling a short that was going into the far corner before the stopper palmed it behind.

Chris Zebrowski and Robbie Willmott forced Bury keeper Brian Jensen into equally impressive stops with shots from the right of the Shakers box.

But Platt wasted the best chance of the opening period, heading a dinked Hussey cross wide from six yards when in acres of space.

Bury centre-back Jim McNulty was inches away from getting on the end of a Sedgwick free kick in the opening minute of the second half before Newport captain Mike Flynn tested Jensen with a snap shot at the other end.

The boggy pitch and plummeting temperatures took the sting out of a cagey second half before the County skipper again popped up in the Bury box to get a shot off on the turn that Jensen struggled to palm away to safety.

Chris Sedgwick saw an 80th-minute strike from the edge of the Newport box well saved by McLoughlin, low to his right.

But both sides looked happy to settle for the point as the game petered out in the final 10 minutes.