Amr Zaki scored the winner tonight as a vastly experienced Hull City reserves line-up edged out youthful Wanderers opponents in Leyland.
Zaki ghosted in at the back post to head home from a teasing right-wing cross with just a few minutes left on the clock. The Egyptian seemed to take a kick to the stomach as he dived in, as he took a minute to recover once the ball had gone in, but was soon fine.
Kamel Ghilas had opened the scoring from close range late in the first half after good work down the left flank. but within 30 seconds of the restart Zoltan Harsanyi equalised for the Trotters.
City, with missing man Dean Marney playing alongside presumably-back-from-Grimsby Nicky Featherstone in midfield, enjoyed the lion’s share of possession, without creating many gilt-edged chances.
However, in the first half we spurned a virtual open goal from a few yards (I think it was Featherstone who blasted it over), while Mark Cullen did well to go through for a one-on-one but his firm shot was saved.
At the other end, the Trotters conspired to miss a few easy chances, particularly in a spell after their goal, while Liam Cooper deflected one goalbound shot over and Matt Duke did well to get down and keep out a low drive among other good saves.
If you’re wondering why I’m sketchy on most of the details above, it’s mainly because I was stood at pitch level behind the goal so the view made the game hard to follow at times. It’s also that even some of the players find it hard to properly concentrate during a reserve match so forgive me for chatting and letting my mind wander.
The torrential rain abated in the second half long enough for me to whip my Flip video camera out and after about 30 deleted clips as attacking moves fizzled out, I finally managed to capture the Zaki goal.
Hull City line-up: Matt Duke, John Leonard, Ibrahima Sonko, Liam Cooper, Kevin Kilbane, Richard Garcia, Nicky Featherstone, Dean Marney, Kamel Ghilas, Amr Zaki, Mark Cullen. Subs: Mark Oxley, Darragh Satelle, Jamie Devitt, Ryan Kendall, Daniel Wilkinson.
Bolton Wanderers line-up: Rob Lainton, Joe Riley, Adam Blakeman, Chris Stokes, Rhys Bennett, Sam Sheridan, Javlon Campbell, Stuart McDonald, Zoltan Harsanyi, Aaron Mooy, Michael O’Halloran. Subs: Maison McGeechan, Jay Lynch, Tom Eckersley, Nathan Battersby, Liam Irwin.