A stunning brace from substitute Connor Comber gave Bury a come from behind 2-1 victory over near neighbours Prestwich Heys to keep pace with the leading sides in the division, writes James Beedie.

Winless in the last four matches Bury manager Dave McNabb rang the changes; Harry Wright was back between the sticks while there were first starts for defender Joe Maguire and forward Dean Pinnington. With both Shakers strikers Andy Briggs and Dec Daniels taking knocks in the draw against Wythenshawe on Saturday the number 9 shirt was handed to Jacob Holland-Wilkinson in an unfamiliar role.

In opposition Prestwich Heys had their own promotion aspirations to consider. Very much still in the playoff hunt Heys were not going to be pushovers, and so it proved in the opening five minutes. A great diagonal ball by Dylan Fitzgerald was misjudged by Keenan Ferguson and allowed Kieron Molloy to slip in behind him. The Heys winger thumped his effort into the top corner to give Prestwich the lead with the very first shot of the day.

Heys ought to have extended their lead in an opening half where they had their crosstown opponents up against the ropes. Molloy again got in behind the defence, his cross flashed across the face of the Bury goal but no one was there to put it away. A Matt Davies cross was met by Brad Sullivan but his powerful shot was straight at Harry Wright in the Bury goal.

It wasn’t until the thirtieth minute that Bury registered their first meaningful chance of the match, Andy Scarisbrick connecting well onto a cross from the deep and forced a great save from Russell Saunders. It was a sign of things to come as Bury began to take the match to their opponents.

Miles Storey who had cut a lonely figure on the left wing for Bury was forced to withdraw through injury and was replaced by Connor Comber. The Shakers substitute came on and took his place as Bury prepared to take a free kick. Dean Pinnington took the set piece, the ball was swung into the box and headed out again but only into the path of Comber standing just outside the penalty area. He struck the ball perfectly on the volley and with his very first touch fired a thunderous equaliser into the back of the net.

After the break both sides pushed for the lead, Heys had shots by Sullivan and Gabriel Mooney-Munoz well saved by Wright while Pinnington and Scarisbrick both put efforts wide of the Heys post before the deadlock was broken again.

A long ball forward found Comber all alone, with a swing of his left boot he lifted the ball over the reach of an outstretched Saunders and into the bottom corner of the goal to send the Bury fans into raptures.

The home side responded well and began a long siege of the Bury goal. Substitute Connor Martin attempted an overhead kick that only just cleared the Bury crossbar while a Sam Owawumi shot was cleared off the line and an Aaron Chalmers header saved during a prolonged spell of Heys winning corner after corner but not being able to capitalise on their opportunities.

Bury had chances on the counter, Scarisbrick ought to have put the match beyond sight with a one on one chance that Saunders saved well while substitute Max Harrop fired wide after completing a long mazy run through a tiring Prestwich defence but the one goal lead proved enough to earn three points.

While neither side will have won or lost their promotion hopes in this contest this may prove to be a vital win for the Shakers, casting off their recent run of bad results and keeping pace with the leaders. Four matches remain for Bury to claim back top spot and an automatic promotion spot. Otherwise there’s a good chance of a replay between these two sides in the playoffs.