Gudiev heroics keep Ural onslaught at bay

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Ural Ekaterinburg 0-0 Akhmat Grozny
Sunday 13 March, Ekaterinburg Arena

Man of the Match: Vitaly Gudiev (Akhmat) 

A tightly fought first half yielded little goalmouth action of note - perhaps not surprising in Ekaterinburg, where Ural have managed half of the next lowest scoring side's home goals, but also have the third best defensive record heading into matchday 21.

Oleg Shatov appearing in an Ural shirt in Ekaterinburg for the first time in over a decade was perhaps the highlight for the home fans in the opening period. 

After the break, however, Igor Shalimov's side took the initiative, with Eric Bicfalvi, Andrey Egorychev and Ramazan Gadzhimuradov all seeing shots blocked or narrowly miss the target. 

With 15 minutes left, Bicfalvi cut behind the Akhmat defence before drilling a dangerous low cross through the six-yard box inches from Egorychev, who then saw a low shot kept out by Vitaly Gudiev at full stretch shortly after. 

Gudiev pulled off an even better save with eight minutes to go as Ivan Kuzmichev lashed a rocket towards the bottom corner after winning possession himself outside the Akhmat area. 

By hook or crook - and Gudiev's defiance - Akhmat withheld the considerable pressure to claim a battling point. 

Ural go 12th on 20 points, while Akhmat go sixth on 31 points.

Next RPL fixtures: Saturday 19 March - Ural vs Khimki; Akhmat vs Lokomotiv

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