Gardner strikes to down Newcastle

March 2nd, 2009 - 2:34 pm ICT by IANS  

London, March 2 (DPA) Ricardo Gardner scored with his first touch to set Bolton Wanderers on their way to a 1-0 victory over Newcastle United in the Premier League.
The Jamaica international came on as a half-time substitute Sunday and within 90 seconds had latched on to Matt Taylor’s cross, sweeping a finish with his less-favoured right foot across goalkeeper Steve Harper and into the far corner.

It was a lead Bolton’s play fully merited. Johan Elmander spurned a number of first-half chances, while Kevin Davies probably should have had a penalty as Sebastian Bassong clambered over him on contesting an aerial ball.

Newcastle, though, were furiously that they were denied a late penalty when Fabrico Coloccini’s drive was blocked by the arms of Jlloyd Samuel.

The win lifts Bolton to 10th, a comfortable seven points above the drop zone, but Newcastle’s woes mount, with just two points now separating them from the bottom three.

Hull City’s slide continued, as they were beaten 2-1 at home by Blackburn Rovers, who climbed out of the relegation zone.

Hull have not won in their last 11 in the Premier League, and have slipped to fourteenth in the table, just three points above the relegation zone.

Blackburn, meanwhile, are fourth bottom, above Middlesbrough only on goal difference.

Their form is very definitely on the up, though, having lost just three of 13 games since Sam Allardyce replace Paul Ince as manager in December.

Stephen Warnock put them ahead after 34 minutes, sidefooting into the top corner.

Roque Santa Cruz had touched the ball back to him after Hull goalkeeper Matt Duke had fumbled a deflected shot.

Three minutes later Keith Andrews added a second, heading home Warnock’s cross.

Any prospect of a Hull comeback seemed to disappear after 63 minutes as Dean Marney was sent off for kicking out at Morten Gamst Pedersen.

But Hull kept fighting, and pulled one back 11 minutes from time through Ian Ashbee.

West Ham United climbed to seventh with a 1-0 win over Manchester City.

Jack Collison got the only goal on 71 minutes, volleying in after Savio Nsereko’s initial effort was saved.

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