Donny dig in to hold Royals

Reading saw their eight-game Championship winning run come to an end as they were held to what could be a vital 1-1 draw for Doncaster.

Last Updated: 13/03/12 at 22:38

Pearce: Headed Reading level

Pearce: Headed Reading level

More of the games that matter

2 years free Sky Broadband Unlimited for Sky Sports customers

The Royals had blitzed all that had come before them in recent weeks as they surge towards the Premier League, but at the Keepmoat on Tuesday, they came up against a Rovers side fighting to stay in the division at the other end.

And it was Dean Saunders' side that took the lead midway through the first half when Kyle Bennett put the finishing touch on El-Hadji Diouf's lead-up work, finishing a fine team move.

It would have been an injustice had the visitors been defeated, though, as they had missed three glaring chances before Diouf's goal and Alex Pearce, who missed two of them, finally bagged by heading Ian Harte's corner home shortly after the break to level.

Both sides could have won it as Giles Barnes went close for the home side and Pearce was again denied for Reading, but it ended all square.

Still, the point was enough for Brian McDermott's side to move into the automatic promotion places and they look a good bet to be celebrating come the end of April, while Rovers remain unbeaten in five and are now three points adrift of safety.

The hosts returned to the Keepmoat on the back of an impressive four-point haul from back-to-back away games at Nottingham Forest and West Ham, while Reading arrived in simply irresistible form with eight wins on the bounce.

It was the Royals that could have taken an early lead, but Diouf was an unlikely hero as he cleared Pearce's powerful header from Harte's corner off the line.

Harte's deliveries were causing chaos in the Rovers six-yard box in the opening 15 minutes and Pearce unbelievably missed another chance from three yards before Mikele Leigertwood also headed over with goalkeeper Carl Ikeme stranded.

Doncaster could easily have been three down, but with their first real opening they took a surprise lead in the 27th minute and it was a superb team goal.

The hosts expertly manoeuvred the ball out to the right, where Diouf played a one-two with James Coppinger and the Senegal international whipped in a low cross which Bennett met at the far post to prod home.

That goal galvanised Rovers and they were enjoying a good spell in the lead up to half-time, but they had to be thankful to Ikeme's agility to keep them in the advantage with two fine saves.

First he scooped away Noel Hunt's downward header and then he kept out a low Jem Karacan effort as the half-time whistle could not come soon enough for Rovers.

It was only a matter of time until Reading made one of Harte's delicious deliveries count and they finally did so six minutes after the restart when a deep corner was met by Pearce, who made no mistake from five yards out.

Rovers were in no mood to lie down, though, as they twice went close to restoring their lead through Frederic Piquionne's header and Barnes' volley.

Doncaster continued to look the more likely to score again and Habib Beye glanced his header wide after good wing play by Coppinger.

However, the inevitable Reading onslaught came in the final 15 minutes and Pearce was denied again as Sam Hird cleared off the line before Jason Roberts, Hunt and Kaspar Gorkss all went close.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

More Match Results

Tuesday, 21 October 2014
19:45
Blackburn 1-0 Birm'ham  
Blackpool 0-1 Derby  
B'mouth 3-0 Reading Report
Brentford 0-0 Sheff Wed  
Cardiff 3-1 Ipswich  
Charlton 2-1 Bolton  
Huddsf'ld 1-1 Brighton Report
Norwich 1-1 Leeds  
Rotherham 3-3 Fulham Report
Watford 2-2 N Forest Report

Sky Bet Championship

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Derby 13 13 26
2 Watford 13 11 25
3 M'boro 13 7 23
4 Wolves 13 5 23
5 Norwich 13 10 22
6 N Forest 13 9 22
7 Charlton 13 4 22
8 B'mouth 13 6 21
9 Ipswich 13 4 20
10 Cardiff 13 2 19
11 Blackburn 13 -1 19
12 Brentford 13 -1 19
13 Sheff Wed 13 0 18
14 Rotherham 13 -3 16
15 Leeds 13 -3 16
16 Huddsf'ld 13 -6 16
17 Reading 13 -8 15
18 Millwall 13 -3 14
19 Wigan 13 -2 12
20 Brighton 13 -3 12
21 Birm'ham 13 -8 11
22 Fulham 13 -9 11
23 Bolton 13 -13 8
24 Blackpool 13 -11 6

Updated Wed, 22 Oct 2014

Footer 365

Champions League: Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers rues defensive mistakes in Real Madrid defeat

Brendan Rodgers says he could have asked for no more from his side after seeing them taken apart by Real Madrid.

Champions League: Real Madrid ease past Liverpool with 3-0 win at Anfield

Real Madrid produced a first-half masterclass as they overpowered Liverpool 3-0 in the Champions League at Anfield.

Champions League: Late goals give Arsenal 2-1 victory at Anderlecht

Arsenal scored twice in the final two minutes to come from behind and secure a 2-1 Champions League win at Anderlecht.

Mail Box

Do Man City Have A 'Small Mentality'?

That's one claim in the mailbox after Vincent Kompany focused on a few hundred CSKA fans sneaking into the ground instead of City blowing a two-goal lead...

City: Like A Deer Caught In The Headlights

...while Chelsea just live for Champions League nights. That's one view in a mailbox that also includes several happy football fans and looks forward to Michael Carrick's return...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property