Match ratings: Exeter City 1 Hartlepool United 0. Encouragement for Pools

Rhys Oates in action for Pools during their 1-0 loss at Exeter City. Picture by FRANK REID

Rhys Oates in action for Pools during their 1-0 loss at Exeter City. Picture by FRANK REID

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Hartlepool United will have come away from Exeter City wondering how they left empty-handed.

There was plenty of good attacking play and the defence was much stronger. Here are the player ratings:

Adam Bartlett: Unlucky to finish on losing side. Had less to do than of late but a good game with a cracking save or two. 6

Brad Halliday: Canny debut for on-loan signing. Got forward well and no slouch. Very positive. 6

Scott Harrison: Solid at back and had one shot blocked as he tried for his second goal of the season. 6

Andrew Boyce: Preferred to Harry Worley and, like Harrison, was strong at the back against a good home side. 6

Dan Jones: Gave away the ball a couple of times in dodgy places in the first half, but good display and tremendous second-half tackle to deny Clinton Morrison. 6

Matthew Bates: Took on the Carl Magnay role and took it on with distinction. Got forward well too. 6

Nicky Featherstone: Was handed the skipper’s armband and, as ever, looked good in both halves of the field. Got into a lot of advancedd positions and won pen. 7

Michael Woods: Booked and getting close to a ban, but some incisive work in and around the opposition box. 7

Rhys Oates: A couple of bad crosses to start with but then had a great game going forward, involved in almost all the good away play. Should have scored. 8

Rakish Bingham: Will be kicking himself not to have scored from the spot. Otherwise a good game. 6

Jake Carroll: Still struggling with his set-piece/ final ball, but made his contribution elsewhere.

Sub: Scott Fenwick (for Bingham 78): N/A

Exeter City: Olejnik, Ribeiro, Tillson, Brown, McAllister, Nicholls (Holmes 66), Oakley (Grant 74), Noble, Harley, Wheeler, Nichols (Morrison 61).

Unused subs: Pym, Woodman, Oyeleke, McCready

Goal: Ribeiro 90

Pools: Bartlett, Halliday, Harrison, Boyce, Jones, Bates, Featherstone (capt), Woods, Oates, Bingham (Fenwick 78), Carroll.

Unused subs: Denton, Worley, Walker, Hawkins, Smith, Oyenuga, Fenwick

Booked: Woods 63

Referee: Andy Woolmer

Attendance: 3,135 (Pools 72)