Derbyshire shoots down the Owls

ROTHERHAM United pumped up their Championship survival challenge after completing another famous victory at Hillsborough.

Matt Derbyshire’s first-half strike was enough to down big city rivals Sheffield Wednesday and hand manager Neil Warnock and the battling Millers a second straight victory.

Back at a ground where they’d not lost since 1981, they had the better of the first 45 minutes and deservedly led at the break but it took a strong rearguard action after that to make sure of three big points in front of nearly 29,000 spectators, Wednesday’s largest league attendance of the season.

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 Grant Ward could have scord with an early volley before the goal arrived on 20 minutes. The Millers worked space for Lee Frecklington down the right and his low ball across the goal was mopped up by Derbyshire at the back post as home defenders dithered.

The Owls thought they had an equaliser when Aiden McGeady fired home, only for the ball to hit Michael Turner, adjudged offside, on the way in. Jack Hunt, the former Millers loanee, also flashed an effort just wide but Wednesday’s final ball continued to let them down and they were relieved when Danny stabbed wide from Grant Ward’s inviting centre.

Wednesday had to improve in the second half and they did. Ross Wallace clobbered the bar, Gary Hooper had an effort disallowed and substitute Lucas Joao forced Lee Camp to parry.

Rotherham had to defend for their lives at the kop end and they survived again when Camp saved a Wallace free-kick with his legs.

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The Owls ran out of ideas in the latter stages and the Millers nearly scored on the break through Richie Smallwood before the celebrations kicked into motion.

A win on the day for MK Dons means gap to safety remains at three points ahead of Tuesday’s home match with Middlesbrough.

Wednesday: Westwood, Hunt, Lees, Turner, Pudil, Wallace, Lee, Bannan, McGeady (Joao 46), Nuhiu, Hooper

Millers: Camp, Richardson, Broadfoot, Wood, Mattock, Halford, G. Ward (,  Frecklington, Smallwood, D. Ward (Best 90), Derbyshire (Newell 82)

Referee: Christopher Kavanagh (Lancs)

Attendance: 28,912