Huddersfield Town 2 Blackburn Rovers 2: Terriers' exemplary commitment unable to see them through to smash-grab-win

Huddersfield Town put Neil Warnock through 45 minutes of water torture on his Bank Holiday Monday – and almost got away with it.

Had their game against Blackburn Rovers lasted 90 minutes, the Terriers would have been celebrating a fourth successive win in their fight against relegation.

But seconds into added time substitute Ryan Hedges pounced on Tomas Vaclik's latest save to rain all over the home team's parade.

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It felt like a steel toecap in the unmentionables for home supporters who had seen their side battle so hard to preserve a lead they had held since the 22nd minute.

COMMITTED: Huddersfield Town's David Kasumu (right) tackles Blackburn Rovers' Tyrhys DolanCOMMITTED: Huddersfield Town's David Kasumu (right) tackles Blackburn Rovers' Tyrhys Dolan
COMMITTED: Huddersfield Town's David Kasumu (right) tackles Blackburn Rovers' Tyrhys Dolan

Warnock is an absolute wizard of football management but an Easter miracle was beyond him.

There was no smile on the veteran manager's face as he clapped the home supporters at full-time but when he eventually dries out he will reflect on the fact his team had taken a point off one of the best teams in the Championship and that whatever else his players were unable to give him, effort and commitment were not amongst them.

The second half was an absolute onslaught they so nearly survived.

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Two-nil down after a smash-and-grab of a first half, Rovers scored less than 75 second into the second half and hit a post with ten minutes to go.

Goalkeeper Vaclik got busier the longer the clock down and walked away with the sponsors' man-of-the-match but by rights he should have been busier still.

With 81 per cent of the possession, Blackburn had 21 shots yet so many had defenders – which is what pretty much every Huddersfield player bar Danny Ward was – throwing themselves in the line of fire as if their lives depended on it.

Tom Lees was caked in vaseline like a heavyweight in round 10 having given blood in the first half and everyone in blue-and-white stripes was running on fumes by the end.

It was wonder they held out for as long as they did.

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It was hard to say exactly what formation Huddersfield started with as Pearson man-marking the wandering Ben Brereton Diaz like a barnacle and the other cogs in the machine slotting in wherever there were gaps to be filled to ensure the centre-backs were never left exposed but easy to say how they finished: 9-0-1.

For a man who is not supposed to be able to do sophisticated tactics, watching the way Joseph Hungbo, Josh Ruffels, Josh Koroma and others switched positions with a seemingly telepathic understanding of what everyone else was doing was a joy to watch.

The Terriers had only two shots in the first 22 minutes and scored both of them.

They call Pearson the Keighley Cannavaro but he is fast becoming the Keighley Kane after four goals in three appearances.

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Lees won his header at a 17th-minute corner and when a Blackburn defender stuck out a leg, Aynsley Pears got a hand to it but not a convincing one. Pearson pounced to head in.

Five minutes later, ludicrously, it was two.

On Good Friday Jack Rudoni finally scored his first goal as a Terrier so it was perhaps inevitable his second would be along in the next game, neatly slotting Joseph Hungbo's low cross after Ward flicked on a free-kick.

Huddersfield were oozing confidence, Rudoni's backheel to release David Kasumu highlighting as much. As the half went on, the hosts began to keep the ball a bit better, their confidence visibly growing.

Blackburn were just shell-shocked.

Pearson finally allowed Brereton Diaz a shot on goal after half an hour but he dragged it wide.

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Lees threw himself in the way of Sammie Szmodics's shot after the midfielder broke through the middle, and was soon bleeding from the eye after being accidentally caught by a stray elbow. Warnock, soaked to the bone on the touchline, would have absolutely loved both.

Kasumu casually filled in at centre-back as Lees got patched up.

All the while all Vaclick had to save was a couple of efforts from Joe Rankin-Costello.

It was the full-back playing more like a winger who beautifully lifted the ball over the goalkeeper right at the start of the second half and when he did, everybody knew what was coming next.

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To list all the chances the visitors created would take too long, suffice to say that the Terriers were kenneled in their half, unable to make the most of their few breakaways.

Their only real second-half chance was a great one, served up for Jonathan Hogg by a Rudoni free-kick in the 74th minute but he headed it over.

At the other end, Rankin-Costelloe in particular was peppering the goal.

A Tyler Morton pass rolled agonisingly over the sluggish surface and against a post after 79 minutes.

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At that stage Blackburn must have thought it was not going to be their day, the more so when Vaclik twice tipped over from the excellent Rankin-Costelloe, and Brereton Diaz dragged another effort wide.

But just as the board went up to signal five added minutes, Hedges was alert to yet another save and applied the killer touch.

Blackburn's football deserved victory, Huddersfield's effort likewise.

So a draw was fair, even if it felt the exact opposite to both clubs.

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Huddersfield Town: Vaclik; Pearson, Helik, Lees, Ruffels, Koroma (High 86); Hungbo (Jackson 77), Hogg, Rudoni, Kasumu; Ward (Harratt 86).

Unused substitutes: Bilokapic, Edmonds-Green, Simpson, Lowton.

Blackburn Rovers: Pears; Rankin-Costello, Carter, Hyam, Pickering; Morton, Travers (Leonard 65), Wharton; Szmodics, Dolan (Hedges 73), Brereton Diaz.

Unused substitutes: Kaminski, Brittain, Gallagher, Wharton, Garrett.

Referee: S Martin (Staffordshire).