Gayle takes plaudits as West Brom see off Hull

West Brom caretaker manager Jimmy Shan hailed striker Dwight Gayle after his brace in the 3-2 Sky Bet Championship win over Hull.

In-form Gayle, who has scored six goals in the last three games, rescued Albion after they had fallen behind.

Kieran Gibbs gave Albion a 42nd-minute lead before Hull drew level through full-back Todd Kane in the 48th.

Kane gave Hull the lead after 59 minutes before Gayle grabbed Albion’s equaliser in the 63rd minute and then sealed the win five minutes from time.

Shan, whose side have all but secured their place in the play-offs, said: “Dwight has had two clinical finishes.

“When he had a dry patch I spoke about how important a player he is for us with his work ethic and appetite.

“He’s got a great attitude and his scoring record this season has been fantastic.

“He is a key player but I’m looking at our squad as a whole, they’re all key players and hopefully they will all contribute to this being a successful season.”

Shan, who revealed central defender Ahmed Hegazi apologised for his angry reaction to being substituted, added: “I think we made hard work of it if I’m being honest with you.

“There were moments when we could have gained more control and created more opportunities.

“The first 10 or 15 minutes of the second half we started slowly. I can’t put my finger on it if I’m being honest.

“I wouldn’t question the boys’ character or resilience, I’ve worked with most of them for more than 12 months now.

“The quality we’ve got, we’re always going to cause the opposition problems.”

Hull manager Nigel Adkins conceded his side’s play-off hopes are all but over after back-to-back defeats left them seven points adrift of the top six with only three games remaining.

But he thinks his players deserve credit for getting into the play-off shake-up in the first place after being tipped as relegation candidates at the start of the season.

Adkins said: “The lads have given us everything this season.

“We have come away from home and we knew that it would be a challenging fixture.

“We have played some good football and Todd Kane scored two great goals to put us in the ascendancy.

“But we knew that West Brom are a threat at set-pieces and we know that in Gayle they have a goalscorer.

“We designated a player to mark him but his equaliser was a turning point and the third goal was actually offside.

“So we did not get the fortune that sometimes you need and it is fine margins.

“You can’t fault the effort and commitment of the players. We were tipped to get relegated. We were bottom of the league in October and the players have given everything.

“That effectively takes us away from the play-off positions. Mathematically, we are still in there but you to be realistic as well.

“But you cannot fault the players. They have given us everything this season.”

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