Bristol City 1 Hull City 1: Bruce satisfied after fighting back for point
A swirling wind and lively pitch provided testing conditions for the players, but both managers emerged satisfied and full of praise for their opponents.
Cotterill said: “Before the game I was tipping Hull for promotion and nothing I saw changed my mind.
“They have a great spirit about them at the moment, which combined with the quality of their players probably makes them an even better team than they were in the Premiership last season.
“We knew it would be a huge test for us and I felt we came through it well. We scored against Hull, which no one had done for a while, and stopped their winning run.
“While we didn’t deserve to win the game, we didn’t deserve to lose it either. Both teams deserve credit because those conditions are the worst you can face as a player.
“Our goalkeeper didn’t have many saves to make, which was pleasing, and we can take a lot from the game going forward.”
Kieran Agard fired the hosts in front after 39 minutes after Andrew Robertson brought down Elliott Bennett on the right side of the area.
Luke Freeman’s in-swinging free-kick caused havoc and the Robins appealed for handball before Agard pounced on the loose ball to net with a left-footed short on the turn.
Hull had to wait until the 73rd minute to equalise.
Substitute Shaun Maloney raced clear on to Mohamed Diame’s flick and shot emphatically past Frank Fielding.
Bruce said: “An away point is never bad, but I wasn’t happy with our first-half performance because we gave the ball away too cheaply and conceded too many free-kicks, which invited pressure.
“That is what led to their goal. I warned the players beforehand that Bristol City are in a false position and I believe they will be comfortable in the Championship by the end of the season.
“Like myself, Steve Cotterill has been around the block as a manager and learned his trade.
“I knew his team would be positive and they defended tremendously, but in the second half we were more like ourselves.
“I feel I’m talking like a cricket captain, but I was sorry we lost the toss and had to play with the sun in our faces in the first half because it was very difficult.
“We elected to let (Abel) Hernandez get a bit of extra sun on his back after the international break and if we had lost I would have left myself open.”
Bristol City: Fielding, Ayling, Flint, Baker, Bennett (Little 82), Pack, Smith, Williams, Freeman, Agard, Kodjia (Wilbraham 78). Unused substitutes: Cox, Reid, Moore, Bryan, O’Leary.
Hull City: McGregor, Odubajo (Aluko 83), Dawson (Davies 37), Maguire, Robertson, Elmohamady, Huddlestone, Livermore, Clucas, Diame, Akpom (Maloney 62). Unused substitutes: Bruce, Taylor, Jakupovic, Hayden.
Referee: Paul Tierney (Lancashire).