MATCH REPORT: Rotherham United 0 Torquay 1

Out of luck: Jason Taylor fires in a shot for Rotherham.       Picture: dean atkins
Out of luck: Jason Taylor fires in a shot for Rotherham. Picture: dean atkins
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THESE two arrived with their own personal agendas clearly written out - a win for Torquay and they jumped up to second place; a win for Rotherham and they would go two points behind Oxford and right back into the Play-off race.

The Millers could hardly have done much more than they did, producing their best first half display for some time and then, in the second half, attacking constantly but unable to break down the massed Torquay ranks as the visitors clung to their lead with solid, organised defending - and their last seven wins have all been by 1-0.

The Millers needed that bit of luck too but it was denied them, particularly when they hit the bar in the first half, and for all their possession and pressure, they came up against a side determined to hold on to their lead and to throw bodies in the way.

The first start for some time for Evans (after his 45 minutes on Saturday) saw Schofield dropping out and Pringle took his role in behind Revell.

Pringle was certainly lively and in a bright Rotherham start he fashioned an early opportunity, linking with Taylor but then dragging his right foot shot inside the area.

Two dangerous centres from Bradley were well defended and Torquay had to pull out the stops at the back.

A splendid covering header from Oastler denied Mullins and when Revell nodded down, an excellent block by Ellis stopped Pringle cashing in.

Torquay were defending well, and had to, but with their first threat O’Kane’s 18 yarder forced a full length save from Rhys Taylor.

With their second threat they were in front on 25 minutes. A sharp centre from Nicholson saw Mansell arrive quickly at the near post to flash home a header.

It could not detract from Rotherham’s good start or that it had been one of their brighter attacking first half displays here. And they might have equalised twice.

Firstly Revell hooked just over from Taylor’s touch on and then Evans cut in, his fierce effort rebounded off Olejnik’s chest and, fortunately for the keeper, just past both Revell and Pringle.

The Millers went closer when Pringle spotted Revell and the striker’s volley thumped against the bar. It came out to Evans but his header, under pressure, went straight back to the grateful Olejnik stranded by a post.

The Millers trailed at half-time but didn’t deserve to - the crowd applauded them off - and Torquay had shown organisatioin and dogged teamwork. Could Rotherham keep it up in the second half?

Well, Evans forced a full length save from Olejnik and then powered in a header from a Grabban cross and it went straight at the keeper. Torquay were hanging on.

They seemed content with what they had and it was a case of could the Miullers break them down.

When Grabban threatened, the excellent Olejnik beat away his fierce angled effort.

Torquay clearly were in a what-we-have-we-hold mode but in the final minutes a rare break saw Jarvis hit the bar from 22 yards. Even in stoppage time Rotherham saw Cresswell have a shot blocked and Revell’s follow up saved.

ROTHERHAM UNITED: R Taylor; Bradley, Raynes (Cresswell 85), Mullins, Wood; Grabban J Taylor, Harrison (Schofield 70), Evans; Pringle; Revell.. Subs: Tonge, Cadogan, Warrington.

TORQUAY UNITED: Olejnik; Oastler, Ellis, Saah, Nicholson (Rowe-Turner 85); Mansell, Lathrope, Stevens (Jarvis 64), Morris; O’Kane; Howe (Atieno 64) Ss: Rice, MacDonald.

Referee: Gary Sutton (Notts).

Attendance: 2,538

Goal: Mansell, 25, for Torquay.

Millers boss Andy Scott has lined up a striker from a Championship club and says he expects the player to sign tomorrow. “We’ve agreed with his club and he’s a player desperate to do well and who is hungry to score goals,” said Scott.