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Result: Preston earn bragging rights over Blackburn in Lancashire derby

All three goals came in the first half as Preston claimed a 2-1 win.

Preston moved level on points with Blackburn after defeating their hosts 2-1 in the Sky Bet Championship at Ewood Park.

The 100th league meeting between the two sides was ultimately settled in the first half through Greg Cunningham's superb strike – his first since returning to Preston – and Liam Lindsay's close-range header.

Adam Armstrong's penalty in first-half added-time left the game in the balance but Rovers could not maintain the momentum and missed the chance to gain ground on the top six.

They enjoyed the majority of play and were denied an equaliser by a magnificent Daniel Iversen save, but it was the Lilywhites who had the clearer chances to extend the lead.

Two goals were enough for Alex Neil's men, who ended a run of three winless games.

Blackburn remain six points off the top six after losing their first league game at home in 2021.

Rovers made two alterations from the defeat at QPR, including a start for Bradley Dack.

Alan Browne returned from injury for Preston, who gave a first start to Cunningham since he re-signed for the club.

Those two players combined to put the visitors ahead in the 19th minute as Browne sprayed a wonderful cross-field ball to fellow wing-back Cunningham, whose first touch set him up perfectly and he slammed his shot into the right corner from 20 yards, giving Thomas Kaminski no chance.

The half burst into life in the dying minutes, as Preston deservedly doubled their advantage two minutes before the break when Ryan Ledson's pinpoint corner was met by Lindsay, who nodded in his first goal for the club.

But that advantage was surrendered almost immediately as a clumsy challenge on Sam Gallagher by Andrew Hughes resulted in a penalty that Armstrong clinically dispatched in added-time for his 19th goal of the season.

They were almost level before the half was out after Barry Douglas swung in a cross that Armstrong directed goalwards but Iversen made a remarkable save, getting down at his near post to claw the ball out when it was almost past him.

Preston should have restored their two-goal advantage in the 57th minute when they capitalised on a defensive mix-up which gave Tom Barkhuizen a clear sight of goal but his effort drifted just beyond the far post.

At the other end, Dack planted a free header onto the roof of the net and Armstrong diverted a Douglas cross over as the game continued to open up.

But Preston passed up another glorious opportunity to seal the points when Emil Riis did well to wriggle free of Jarrad Branthwaite into the area but shot straight at Kaminski with just the keeper to beat.

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Harvey Elliott in action for Blackburn Rovers on November 3, 2020
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Thursday's key events


ATHLETICS
· The women's heptathlon continues with the long jump, javelin and 800m, with Katarina Johnson-Thompson now out of contention following an injury (1.10am-1.40pm)
· Andrew Pozzi pursues his dream of an Olympic medal in the men's 110m hurdles final (3.55am)
· Tom Bosworth and Callum Wilkinson are among the British hopes in the men's 20km race walk (8.30am)
· Holly Bradshaw aims to improve on fifth in Rio to challenge Greece's Katerina Stefanidi and Anzhelika Sidorova of Russia for an unlikely medal in the women's pole vault (11am)
· London 2012 champion Kirani James goes up against current world champion Steven Gardiner in the men's 400m final (1pm)

MARATHON SWIMMING
· One of the toughest Olympic events takes place in Tokyo Bay as GB's Hector Pardoe takes on the men's 20km marathon swim (10.30pm Wed)

BOXING
· Galal Yafai takes on takes on Kazakhstan's Saken Bibossinov for a spot in the gold medal bout of the fly (48kg-52kg) class (6.48am)

DIVING
· Lois Toulson and Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix (daughter of First Dates' Fred Sirieix) line up for the women's 10m platform (semi-final 2am; final 7am)

HOCKEY
· Australia face Belgium in the men's final (11am)

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