28th November 1992
1st TEAM REPORT
READING 2, EXETER CITY 3
This game was a personal triumph for City's hiley-rated (excuse the pun) full-back Scott Hiley who scored his first ever league hat-trick for the Grecians.
It was no wonder that City fans referred to Elm Park as a graveyard as City had lost all of their previous 12 visits to the Berkshire club but Hiley's touch of class certainly laid that jinx to rest.
The only shadow cast over the afternoon was when Peter Whiston was dismissed along with Reading striker Jimmy Quinn after the Irish International had lashed out with both fists at the City skipper.
In fact it was Quinn who gave the home side an 11th minute lead when he hit his 10th goal of the season after Andy Gray had supplied him with a perfect cross.
But the Royals lead only lasted seven minutes as Hiley seized on a loose ball to drive home a low shot, through a crowded area, that sped just inside the post.
It was now that Whiston and Quinn were dis- missed and the game very nearly turned nasty with several little vendettas breaking out and ref- eree Graham Pooley booking City's Dolan, Collins and Tonge along with Hopkins and Parkinson of Reading/.
Two minutes from the interval City took the lead for the first time when Reading defender Steve Richardson made a hash of clearing Eamonn Dolan's cross and Hiley was on the ball in a flash to strike it right-footed into the roof of the net.
Hiley should have completed his hat-trick six minutes after the break but he headed Andy Cook's cross inches wide of the upright but it was only a temporary set-back as three minutes later he claimed his third. Cook was again the architect, nutmegging Reading's Mick Gooding wide on the left before crossing into the middle where Hiley made no mistake this time, heading inside the post.
The City hero wasn't finished yet and he charged through onto Dolan's great pass but shot wide of the post.
Four minutes from time Reading almost pulled a goal back when Michael Gilkes tried to bend home a free-kick but Kevin Miller touched the ball onto the cross-bar and clear but in injury time they did succeed when skipper Keith McPherson headed the ball home for a small consolation.
Alternative Report from the Fanzine In Exile Issue 06 - Vol. 2
Reading 2 City 3
Although we had a poor record against Reading, expectations were high amongst the Exiles who gathered at Paddington station to make the trip to Berkshire. Our faith was to be rewarded with another fine team display to follow that seen at Hartlepool.
Without Messrs Moran and Hodge, both injured against Chester the previous week, City lined up with Eamonn Collins, Eamonn Dolan and Alan Tonge all starting, with Gary Chapman (returned from Scarborough) and Toby Redwood on the subs' bench.
Things did not start well, with Reading taking an early lead through Jimmy Quinn, beating his marker to convert a cross from the right past Kevin Miller. If that wasn't bad enough, things got worse with the joint sending off of Peter Whiston and Jimmy Quinn. This resulted from a challenge from behind by Whiston which Quin n then retaliated against. I may be biased [yes! - Ed], but it was Whiston's first offence and he should have just received a caution. Quinn though deserved to go and as an international, should know better.
As it turned out, personally I would have said that Reading's loss was greater than ours, with them really being a poor side who depend on Quinn converting the many crosses which they put into the opposition's penalty area.
As in other recent away games, we showed great character and strength, resulting in a quick equaliser from Scott Hiley with a shot from the right hand side of the area, which went in via a post. Hiley was playing in midfield with Alan Tonge filling in at right back, very impressively it must be said.
From this point on, Reading never really threatened City's goal, apart from a short spell in the second half. Even so, we were all delighted when Scott Hiley got his second just before half time. A cross from Andy Cook, who too had an excellent game, found Hiley at the far post to half volley the ball home.
City took control in the opening exchanges in the second half, with Hiley giving Reading's left back a torrid time. A third goal soon followed from that man Hiley again, this time with a looping header from a fine cross from Andy Cook. He had gone narrowly wide just minutes before with a carbon copy header from a cross by Ronnie Jepson.
City were now comfortably running the game and nearly added to their tally through Hiley again, as Dolan just failed to connect with a Collins through ball to loop the ball over the oncoming goalkeeper. Reading did get a last minute consolation goal, but it was too late to tarnish an excellent away
performance, which sent the travelling City supporters home very happy.
Many thanks to all the Exiles who attended the game and made the day an enjoyable one.
Reading 2 City 3- Take Two!
Having failed to beat Reading at Elm Park for 36 years, this was a game to remember, not only for the die hard City fans, but also for a certain Scott Hiley, who scored a hat trick in an excellent game, marred only by the sending off of captain Peter Whiston. Changes were made by Alan Ball when assistant manager Steve Williams was axed after he failed to join the squad for the trip east and when John hodge failed a late fitness test. With the two
Eamonns Collins and Dolan - starting a game for the first time and Alan tonge drafted into the
team, things took a wrong turn early on when Reading scored in the eleventh minute, Irish
international Quinn knocking the ball home from a Gray cross.
Worse was to follow when Whiston dragged Quinn to the ground on the touchline and the latter retaliated (handbag stuff, by all accounts). Referee Pooley produced the red card for Captain Pete and then for Quinn.
Bally then had to reshuffle his side, with Scotty being drafted into midfield (inspired stuff, this, from Bally) and Browner to full back. We did not have to wait long for the leveller when Scotty latched on to a cross to score with ease from the edge of the box. Exeter began to play some good stuff and scored again just before the break when Scotty volleyed home, after Kelly's free kick was not cleared.
Ten minutes into the second half it was all over for Reading. A great cross by Cook was met with a firm header by Hiley, who beat Hislop with no trouble. Scotty went mad - and who could blame him when he jumped onto the fence in front of all the City fans, his hands high in the air to the cheers of his adoring public. A hat trick, yes, he had done it.
City held on despite a last minute consolation goal by Reading, and we trooped back to watering hole near the station to toast Mr Hiley's health.