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|1995-1996-RESULTS, SCORERS, ATTENDANCES - MORE REPORTS
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Wycombe Wanderers 2
Hull City 2
Saturday 28th October 1995
Football League Division Two
Wycombe went into their home meeting with lowly Hull City on a high following the previous weekend's mauling of Oxford United. However, it took second-half goals from substitute Terry Evans and Mickey Bell to retrieve a point against The Tigers. Evans was returning to First Team action for the first time since the final game of the previous season at Leyton Orient - the big central defender had undergone summer surgery on a ruptured shoulder injury originally picked up in the FA Cup tie with West Ham back in January 1995. The former Brentford man, who had signed a two-year extension to his contract before the arrival of Manager Alan Smith, had also had an appendix operation as a further delay to his return.
The match with Hull, bottom of the League with just nine points from their opening 13 games and facing a winding-up order due to a £250,000 unpaid tax bill, had seen Dean Windass fire the visitors into the lead four minutes before the break with one of the best goals seen at Adams Park - volleying home from around 30 yards after turning with his back to goal. Chris Lee knocked in their second just before the hour mark as Wycombe's ten game unbeaten run in the League looked to be coming to an end. However, Evans had only been on the field for six minutes before he headed home to reduce the deficit to a single goal. Bell then equalised as Wanderers rallied in the final stages but couldn't find the winner. Wycombe remained 7th in the table ahead of the midweek visit of York City.
Reporting for the Bucks Free Press, Sharon Walters wrote: 'Terry Evans returned to first-team football on Saturday and reminded Wycombe what they had been missing in the 25 weeks he has been away. The Blues looked on course to suffer a humiliating defeat at the hands of bottom-of-the-table Hull as they trailed 2-0 early in the second half. But Evansí substitution, along with Simon Garner, in the 59th minute added just the purpose Wanderers needed, with the club captain scoring within six minutes, sparking the revival that saw Blues finish with a draw.
[Alan] Smith clearly needs players like Evans and Garner to lift his side to another level. He admits that Blues have the playing patterns working well, but the finishing still leaves something to be desired. This game was perhaps a prime example of that, with Wycombe, for most of the first half, creating the play and chances.
David Farrell, in particular, proved a problem for his marker, breaking away on several occasions and putting in some dangerous crosses. In the 15th minute one such cross reached David Carroll who just failed to control the volley, which was easily picked up by Northern Ireland international Alan Fettis. Four minutes later, a one-two between Carroll and Miquel Desouza saw the shot deflect off Andy Williams. The ball fell to Steve McGavin, but Fettis, quicker to react, easily dismissed the problem.
And so the half continued, with Wanderers having a hat-full of chances, but no goals. It was eventually a piece of brilliance by Hullís Dean Windass, currently being chased by Norwichís Martin OíNeill, which broke the deadlock on 41 minutes. His thunderbolt shot came totally against the run of play, when from a full 30 yards out, with his back to the goal, Windass created something truly wonderful out of nothing. Flicking the ball up the striker fired the shot as he turned towards the goal with a stunned Paul Hyde able to do little else but watch perfection whistle pass. The strike earned the praise of Smith, who would dearly love to see some of his own players creating the same type of magic.
Wycombe were clearly knocked for six by the goal, especially after creating, up until then, 40 minutes of attractive football. After the break, Hull were obviously boosted by their lead and by the 57th minute they had increased it to 2-0 after a close range shot from Chris Lee. Wycombe, on the other hand, were beginning to fall apart at the seams and Jason Cousins made a few worrying slips in defence to give the visitors more chances than they should have had.
Smith showed good judgement two minutes after the second goal when he pulled Cousins and McGavin off for Evans and Garner, a move the crowd greeted with rapture. Man-of-the-match Evans immediately made his mark with some solid defending and there was an expectancy in the air, which was fulfilled just six minutes after the substitution when a Carroll corner connected with Evansí head for him to power the ball home.
In the 76th minute Mickey Bell secured the equalised when he got on the end of a through ball to unleash his shot. Just minutes from the final whistle Wycombe were appealing for hand-ball after a Gary Patterson strike appeared to be cleared off the line by the hand of a Hull defender. All they got was a corner, which they could not convert.'
Speaking after the game Manager Alan Smith said: "Terry Evans makes other people play, and [Simon] Garner, in fairness to him, did the same. They have certain deficiencies as players but they are prepared to play through them."
He also praised Hull's Dean Windass for his spectacular goal: "Heís a great player and he was prepared to take a gamble. He didnít really know where that ball was going to end up, but he had the guts and was prepared to take the chance, whereas our players were not."
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