brace from former captain Mickey Demetriou and a smart finish from Jamille Matt was enough to see off automatic promotion-chasing Bury 3-1 at Rodney Parade on Good Friday.
The shakers had a poor record in South Wales prior to their latest visit, having won just one of their previous 11 league games away to Newport; this was, however, their last visit in April 2015. Equally, County had won just one of their previous seven league matches against Bury; the fixture in November 2014 which ended 3-1 to the Exiles, a scoreline which would become immediately recognisable.
It didn't take long for County to get into their stride; they came out of the gates on the front foot and within four minutes, they had won a free kick out wide on the right hand side. Matt Dolan whipped it in deep at the back post and there was Mickey Demetriou rising above his man to glance the ball into the net to send Rodney Parade into raptures.
The delight was short-lived, however, as Bury were on terms just 45 seconds later. A long ball was deflected into the path of veteran striker Nicky Maynard who ran through on goal unopposed and coolly slotted the ball beyond Joe Day. Parity restored, but seldom built upon.
It was only until the quarter-hour mark, where the visitors had begun to get their foot on the ball and play it around a bit more, that Bury remained on terms. Robbie Willmott has been in very good form in recent weeks and after he won the ball near the halfway line, he sent an inch-perfect ball through the centre for Jamille Matt who galloped onto it and dispatched it through the goalkeeper's legs into the back of the net.
Rodney Parade was jumping again, and as the game began to get a touch more scrappy, everything was going County's way. They were, however, given a few scares early in the second half, not least of which Danny Mayor's effort from just outside the box crashing off Joe Day's crossbar.
Bury were able to build attacks more freely after the withdrawal of Jamille Matt at half time; his aerial presence was missing to be able to hold the ball and as such, the visitors but ultimately unable to fashion clear-cut chances for themselves. Nevertheless, County needed the insurance of a third goal to kill the game off.
Step up Demetriou once more, as the lean centre-back found himself in an advanced position following a set piece. His first touch teed him up perfectly for a second which, as volleys go, was as good as you'll see anywhere else this weekend. It flew straight into the roof of the net and sent Ryan Lowe's men back to Greater Manchester empty-handed and well-beaten.
So a 3-1 victory over the second-placed team in the league and a wonderful performance to boot. The important thing for County now is to focus on repeating such a performance at a struggling side in Macclesfield Town on Monday afternoon. The play-offs are back in Flynn's men's hands, and it's hard to say for certain that they will relinquish such an opportunity. It's OK to dare to dream, but let's all take it one game at a time.
Man of the Match: Mickey Demetriou
Player Ratings: Day 6, Butler 7, Willmott 7, Dolan 6 (Kennedy 7), Amond 6 (Bakinson 6), Matt 7 (McKirdy 7), Sheehan 6, Bennett 7, O'Brien 7, Poole 7, Demetriou 9
Attendance: 4,433 (449 away)