Poor Pools slump to the bottom

Hartlepool slipped to the bottom of the table after a flat and uninspiring goalless home draw with Walsall.

Last Updated: 23/03/13 at 17:50

Simon Walton: Came close to scoring

Simon Walton: Came close to scoring

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Pools have now gone six games without a goal, while Walsall missed the spark of top scorer Will Grigg and remain three points off the play-offs.

On a bleak North-East day, the windy conditions never made for an appealing game and so it proved.

The wind almost gifted the Saddlers an eighth-minute goal when Andy Taylor's corner held up in the gale and Pools goalkeeper Scott Flinders got to his near post to push the ball away.

At the other end, Pools went close when Simon Walton drove wide from 18 yards, before Neil Austin's cross on the overlap saw debutant Saddlers goalkeeper Sam Johnstone make a fine diving save to keep out Antony Sweeney's header.

Walsall had a late chance to win it when Walton gave away possession to set up a swift counter-attack, but Jamie Paterson's shot was charged down by a pack of home defenders.

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