Rochdale 1-1 Bristol Rovers: Alex Newby secures draw for hosts after Sam Nicholson’s opener

Saturday 31 October 2020 17:12, UK

Mid-table duo Rochdale and Bristol Rovers shared the spoils after an evenly-contested clash at the Crown Oil Arena ended 1-1.

Rovers took a ninth-minute lead when Sam Nicholson picked the pocket of Jimmy Ryan and advanced towards goal before sending a low drive wide of Gavin Bazunu in the Dale goal.

The home side came close to an immediate equaliser as Jake Beesley’s glancing header narrowly cleared the crossbar before Matt Lund’s fierce drive was saved by Anssi Jaakkola.

Dale’s pressure paid off in the 25th minute when skipper Eoghan O’Connell lifted a pass over the Rovers rearguard and Alex Newby raced through on goal, volleying a neat finish beyond Jaakkola.

Aaron Morley struck the crossbar with a swerving effort from distance as the home side finished the half strongly but Rovers came out after the interval and arguably shaded the second half.

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Bazunu kept out shots from Zain Westbrooke and Nicholson while O’Connell twice denied Brandon Hanlan with well-timed last-ditch challenges.

Dale’s best chance of the half fell to O’Connell but the defender was unable to keep his shot down.

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