Brighton and Hull in stalemate
righton's winless run extended to a sixth game after they were held to a goalless draw by a resilient Hull on Saturday night. The stalemate was far from dull, however, and the scoreline might well have been in double figures if not for the remarkable work of goalkeepers Casper Ankergren and Adriano Basso. Nigel Pearson's Tigers can now celebrate a run of seven games without loss in the npower Championship after an indifferent start to the season. Former Spain international Vicente provided two early chances for the Seagulls. With two minutes played, his outswinging corner met Matt Sparrow's right boot. Luckily for the visitors, Manchester United loanee Robbie Brady got across to block the flight of the powerful volley. Vicente's delivery caused further panic when an identical corner found a rising Lewis Dunk, who nodded left of Basso's goalmouth. The Tigers wrested control in the 14th minute, Matt Fryatt's weighted drive deflected away from danger by a brave Dunk. Five minutes later, Dunk put his body on the line once more to intercept a goalbound bullet header from James Chester. Craig Mackail-Smith, with five league goals to his name going into the clash, forced Basso to tip a fizzing shot round the post shortly before the half-hour mark. The visitors rallied again to feed a good ball through to Fryatt, who clipped his chance into the gloves of Ankergren. As the highly energetic first period came to a close, Ashley Barnes was left red-faced when he stubbed wide of goal from close range after accurate service from Gary Dicker. Both sides had successfully nullified each other in the first half and pushed to gain an advantage as early as possible following the break. Ex-Peterborough striker Mclean, with a solitary goal for Hull this campaign, raced on to Liam Rosenior's angled cross in the 48th minute, but his right-footed drive swerved wide of Ankergren's goal. Perhaps frustrated by the missed opportunity, Mclean found himself booked two minutes later after a foul on home defender Marcos Painter. And a lack of discipline from Corry Evans allowed Vicente another chance to demonstrate his dangerous ability from set-pieces, but the home crowd groaned as his curved free-kick dipped agonisingly over the crossbar. Mclean re-emerged as an attacking outlet for the Tigers in the 64th minute, arriving on the edge of the area to force a strong block from Ankergren, before reclaiming possession and stinging the Danish goalkeeper's palms with a fierce strike. Brady lightened the workload of the tireless Mclean in the 71st minute as he curled in a snapshot that Ankergren repelled at full-stretch. But it was Basso, left standing idle for much of the second half, who produced the most remarkable save of the clash. Yet again Vicente picked out a blue and white shirt, but Mackail-Smith's header was snatched up implausibly by the brilliant Brazilian stopper. Encouraged by a return to attacking manoeuvres, Seagulls boss Gus Poyet harried his players to push forward. But with barely 10 minutes remaining, Sparrow looped a cross over the Hull backline to a waiting Barnes who scooped his shot wide of the target. The pressure increased on the visitors when Mackail-Smith forced Basso to punch the ball over his crossbar with five minutes remaining, with Dunk again appearing to block a late Mclean drive, but the points were shared.
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