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Posted on 19 November 2006  - 12:00

Jermain Defoe's penalty secured a share of the Premiership spoils as the lads recovered from Tugay's stunner for a 1-1 draw against Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park on Sunday.

Jermain Defoe's penalty secured a share of the Premiership spoils as the lads recovered from Tugay's stunner for a 1-1 draw against Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park on Sunday.

Tugay smashed home a 30-yard volley to open the scoring in the first half but the midfielder was then sent off for a challenge on Hossam Ghaly in the box which led to Defoe's well-struck equaliser in the 62nd minute.

The team were pinging the ball around with a bit of authority early on, but Rovers found the net on eight minutes. It didn't count for anything due to the assistant's flag being quickly raised, but it was an incisive move involving David Bentley and Benni McCarthy teeing up Shabani Nonda in front of goal. The finish was academic, although well taken.

Edgar Davids - restored to the side on the left of midfield - was next in the action with a low shot that fizzed just wide of Brad Freidel's left hand up right.

The next shot of any significance came on 22 minutes - much to the delight of the home fans. It was a goal out of next to nothing, but the execution was lethal and spectacular in equal measure. Ledley King made a decent connection with his headed clearance from a Blackburn set piece and the ball sailed in the direction of Tugay, who promptly smashed back first time with such incredible power that Paul Robinson had absolutely no chance as the effort arrowed past his outstretched hand and into the top corner of the net.

Jermain Defoe unleashed a dipping volley on turn ten minutes before the break that caused a degree of alarm for Freidel as the team sought to apply a grip on proceedings. Mido had the chance to level in first half stoppage time when a Hossam Ghaly header played him through on goal, but his shot lacked direction. Davids then picked him out again in a more central position and Mido opted for precision in his finish. Freidel gathered comfortably.

There was a change before the second half got underway with Steed Malbranque introduced for his Spurs debut in the Premiership in place of Davids. Just a few minutes in and the ball was in the back of the net and Mido wheeling away in celebration after he diverted Tom Huddlestone's low driven free-kick past Freidel. Once again the flag of the assistant prevented the scoreboard ticking over to the despair of the Egyptian striker.

On 58 minutes the course of the afternoon's business altered dramatically. A clever ball through to Ghaly led to the midfielder being caught by the trailing leg of Tugay as the Turk made his challenge inside the area. Referee Mr Dowd showed no hesitation in pointing to the penalty spot, but did consult his assistant over what punishment to dish out to Tugay.

There was Rovers fury when the card chosen was red and their mood did not improve when Defoe was cool as you like from the spot and planted the ball low beyond Freidel to the American's right.

It was the team in chocolate and gold displaying the appetite to feast on a full three points, although Robbo had to be alert to foil a clever back-heeled attempt from McCarthy with ten minutes left.

Still that one golden chance evaded us as we pushed on and the evening ended on a sour note when Ghaly received a straight red card for a foul on Michael Gray - a point apiece about right.