Nick Barmby rescues a point for Hull as Norwich are frustrated

Nobody seems to want second place in the Championship.

Nick Barmby rescues a point for Hull as Norwich are frustrated Norwich are the latest side to gain occupancy of that position and then immediately follow it up with a frustrating result.

Despite leading midway through the first half thanks to Zak Whitbread's header, Norwich let a winning position slip from their grasp against a side with a disappointing home record. The dropped points allowed third-placed Swansea to move within a point of them. The visitors had started well. Wes Hoolahan came close in the opening stages, attempting a curling strike on the edge of the penalty area that Jack Hobbs deflected over. They took the lead in the 27th minute, when David Fox's cross from the left was headed in powerfully by Whitbread as the Hull goalkeeper, Brad Guzan, raced out to meet the ball, leaving his goal exposed.

After that goal, Norwich dropped deeper and Hull began to dominate. Matty Fryatt's confident drive was well saved by John Ruddy. And an even better chance followed as Liam Rosenior crossed for the unmarked James Harper, who managed to shoot over from close range. Shortly before half-time, Ruddy pushed wide an Andy Dawson free-kick from 25 yards.

Dawson's set-pieces continued to provide Hull's best openings after the break, with Aaron McLean heading over from one free-kick. But Norwich kept the home team on their toes when Fox headed wide and then Hoolahan had a shot saved by Guzan.

Substitute Nick Barmby lifted Hull's mood by scoring the 73rd-minute equaliser, little more than 10 minutes after coming off the bench. Fryatt deserved credit for his surge down the left before cutting the ball back for Barmby, who neatly finished inside the six-yard box.

Norwich showed their intent in the final stages, playing a more open game with Simeon Jackson prompting a save from Guzan after an 18-yard strike but a winner proved elusive.

Powered by article was written by Arindam Rej at the KC Stadium, for The Observer on Saturday 19th March 2011 17.23 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch