Bournemouth 2 Sheffield Wednesday 2: Gray delighted at Owls fightback
The Cherries looked on course for a return to the top of the Sky Bet Championship going into stoppage time after Yann Kermorgant and Matt Ritchie scored, only for Chris Maguire to earn the Owls a point from the spot after a foul on Atdhe Nuhiu.
But it was the failure of referee Paul Tierney not to give the hosts their 16th spot-kick of the campaign in the 65th minute for a foul on striker Callum Wilson that left the hosts frustrated.
The former Coventry man, who has won Bournemouth a string of spot-kicks in recent months with his pace and direct running, looked to have been fouled by Lewis Buxton but the decision was not given, sparking furious reactions from supporters behind the goal.
But Owls manager Stuart Gray, however, revealed Buxton believes he got a touch to the ball when tackling Wilson.
“I respect what the referee decided,” Gray said. “Lewis Buxton said he got a touch of the ball first and you can understand the crowd’s reaction.
“The referee had a decision to make and Bournemouth have had 15 penalties this season so they are obviously doing something right going forward.”
The manner of the late leveller was a real kick in the teeth for Bournemouth after they had bounced back from Kieran Lee’s opener and had then taken the lead despite having 10 men following Simon Francis’ second yellow card.
Gray was heartened with Wednesday’s fighting spirit even though there was nothing on the line with safety secured.
“We knew it was going to be difficult coming here because their tails are up,” he added.
“When we went 2-1 down I was thinking we didn’t deserve that as my players were giving everything.
“We thought maybe it wasn’t going to be our day but we kept going until the final whistle and I thought if I left this building without anything I would have been very disappointed.”