Ward earns Cardiff a deserved point at Hull
Visitors looked to be heading for defeat.
Substitute Danny Ward’s late goal earned Cardiff a dramatic 2-2 draw away at Hull.
The visitors were, for large parts of the game, the better side, but they trailed at half-time when Kamil Grosicki let fly with a speculative free-kick just before the break.
Cardiff will have felt hard done by at the interval, but parity was restored when Robert Glatzel battered home an equaliser in the second half.
The game had looked to be drifting towards a draw, but Jordy De Wijs’ crisp header from a perfect Jarrod Bowen free-kick put Hull in front after 89 minutes.
But Ward, who replaced Gavin Whyte after 71 minutes, had the final word deep into injury-time when he seized upon Aden Flint’s flick-on with a bustling finish inside the penalty box.
Defeat would have been harsh on Cardiff as the hosts were for long periods made to look ponderous in possession and struggled to match their opponents’ physicality.
Perhaps sensing a defensive weakness, Cardiff manager Neil Warnock, as is often his wont, attempted to cash in with set-pieces from the outset.
One such long throw-in, taken on the left by captain Sean Morrison, nearly bore fruit after 12 minutes.
Hull failed to deal with the aerial assault, and a mix-up between Erij Lichaj and Kevin Stewart presented the football to Junior Hoilett, whose fine, hooked strike clipped the crossbar.
Just 60 seconds later, Hoilett’s fizzing, low cross from the left should have been converted by Flint or Glatzel, who were waiting in the wings on the edge of the six-yard box.
Warnock, however, will have been frustrated by their lack of movement when it mattered as the ball skidded past George Long’s left post and out for a goal kick.
Hull grew more competent at the back, though haphazard distribution and unnecessary free-kicks maintained Cardiff’s relative control as the game rather drifted towards half-time.
That was until the 44th minute, when Bowen was clumsily upended by Flint 30 yards from goal.
Poland international Grosicki had it all to do from such a long way out, but his skidding, powerful strike was poorly handled by goalkeeper Alex Smithies, and the ball squirmed into the bottom right-hand corner.
Grosicki, who has now scored four league goals from as many games, might have then added a second soon after the restart – though his stabbed hit from a tight angle, following good work from Jackson Irvine, was smothered by Smithies.
Yet just as it began to look like Cardiff had become rattled, Glatzel equalised.
The German striker owes Leandro Bacuna a huge debt of gratitude as his superb cross from the left flank meant Glatzel could not miss from close range.
Both sides seemed happy with the scoreline at this stage, with Stewart’s swerving strike from 20 yards as close as it got.
But with time running out, Bowen’s excellent free-kick from the right touchline – he also lured Joe Bennett into a foul – was headed home by De Wijs to make it 2-1.
Hull’s celebrations were shortlived, though, as Ward struck at the death.
Yet the drama was not over yet as George Honeyman’s effort with seconds remaining was brilliantly stopped on the goal-line by Morrison.