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Sky Bet Championship

Selhurst Park (ATT 13,324) 17th March 2012 - Kick off 15:00 Ref: D Drysdale

C Palace Crystal Palace vs Hull City Hull City

Draw specialists share spoils

Last Updated: 17/03/12 5:19pm

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Martin: Attempts to break deadlock

Martin: Attempts to break deadlock

Hull made it 11 games unbeaten but were frustrated by a resilient Crystal Palace outfit in a goalless draw at Selhurst Park.

Nick Barmby's side have now kept 18 clean sheets in the Championship this season, more than any other team in the division.

And their defensive fortitude could yet earn them a place in the play-offs, from which they are separated by one point.

With Wilfried Zaha suspended, Palace, on a nine-game unbeaten run of their own, were lacking in creative spark but were always likely to find it difficult to break down the visitors' well-organised backline.

Corry Evans had an early sight of goal for Hull but dragged his shot narrowly wide from the edge of the box.

Anthony Gardner's smart block denied Josh King as he fired off a goal-bound effort from inside the box moments later.

The Tigers were not having it all their own way, however, and Palace's Chris Martin tested Vito Mannone with a stinging effort after 15 minutes.

Martin then attempted to turn provider as he whipped in a dangerous cross for Mile Jedinak but his header cleared the crossbar.

The home side forced a series of corners around the half-hour mark but Martin failed to find a team-mate with consecutive deliveries, James Chester and then King clearing to safety.

On the stroke of half-time Dougie Freedman's men had one more opportunity to threaten from a corner and though Martin picked out Jonathan Williams, the midfielder's shot was kept out by Mannone.

Barmby introduced Tom Cairney at the break as the largely anonymous Evans was withdrawn and the visitors were first to threaten in the second half.

Aaron Mclean forced a save from Julian Speroni with a 25-yard drive before Cairney announced his presence with a strike from even further out which was held by the Argentinian goalkeeper.

Glenn Murray went close to ending his 13-match run without a goal when his headed effort tested Mannone once more.

Freedman threw Sean Scannell into the mix with an hour gone and he went in search of his first goal since September but saw his shot from 20 yards fly just over.

Both sides had late half-chances to win it but Kyle De Silva pulled his effort wide and Robbie Brady's ambitious strike did not cause any major concern for Speroni.

The full-time whistle signalled a seventh draw in nine games for both clubs as Palace slipped into the bottom half of the table while City missed out on the opportunity to go fourth.

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Matches

Table

Sky Bet Championship

Sky Bet Championship
Pos Team P Pts
1 Derby County 13 26
2 Watford 13 25
3 Middlesbrough 13 23
4 Wolverhampton Wanderers 13 23
5 Norwich City 13 22
6 Nottingham Forest 13 22
7 Charlton Athletic 14 22
8 Bournemouth 13 21
9 Ipswich Town 13 20
10 Cardiff City 14 19
11 Blackburn Rovers 13 19
12 Brentford 13 19
13 Sheffield Wednesday 13 18
14 Millwall 14 17
15 Rotherham United 13 16
16 Leeds United 13 16
17 Huddersfield Town 13 16
18 Reading 13 15
19 Fulham 14 14
20 Wigan Athletic 13 12
21 Brighton and Hove Albion 13 12
22 Birmingham City 13 11
23 Bolton Wanderers 13 8
24 Blackpool 13 6