Date: 10th July 2017 at 11:14am
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Sunderland remain unbeaten in pre-season under new boss Simon Grayson but had to settle for a 2-2 draw with Scottish Premiership side Hibernian at Easter Road on Sunday.

On Friday, coming from behind to beat Bury at Gigg Lane, Sunderland battled back from two down to secure victory but on this occasion the Black Cats lost a two goal advantage against Neil Lennon’s side.

Wahbi Khazri’s first half performance was capped with Sunderland’s opener shortly before the interval.

The lead was doubled when Jeremain Lens, minutes after his half time introduction, doubled the advantage as he combined with fellow substitute Rees Greenwood.

Hibernian’s fightback began on 69 minutes when Martin Boyle beat Mika and the Sunderland goalkeeper was beaten again a few minutes later when Simon Murray made it two apiece – but for the crossbar Adam Matthews would have completed the Hibs comeback with a winner.

Hibernian: Marciano, Gray (Murray, 75), McGregor, Fontaine (Pennant, 59), Bartley (Shaw, 75), McGinn, Boyle, Murray (Martin, 75), McGeouch (Graham, 59), Swanson (Porteous, 59), Stevenson.
Subs: Laidlaw, Crane.

Sunderland XI [first-half]: Mannone, Love, Djilobodji, Kone, Jones, Gibson, Rodwell, Embleton, Honeyman, Khazri, Maja.
Sunderland XI [second-half]: Mika, Matthews, O’Shea, Beadling, Galloway, E Robson, Cattermole, Ndong, Greenwood, Gooch, Lens.

Referee: Gavin Duncan
Attendance: 9,309

Commenting after the game Grayson told the Official Website he couldn’t have asked for much more for the opening hour or so but wasn’t so pleased with the final 20-30 minutes.

He said: ‘For 60-70 minutes I thought we were very good. We had a good tempo with the ball and looked solid without it, and we`ve been working on certain things and asking the players to do what we`re trying to implement. I thought they carried that out well and we scored two good goals, but in the last 25 minutes or so we didn`t play with that tempo and we gave it away cheaply.’

Adding: ‘But it`s another 45 minutes for the players which is important and it was nice to see some of our international players out on show, and I was pleased with some of the younger players as well.’

Due to roadworks – Grayson knows the fans would have suffered too – the Sunderland squad didn’t get back from the Bury friendly until 3am, which was followed up by a training session on the Saturday. However, the boss went on to say he wouldn’t be using that as an excuse.

All things considered Grayson was happy enough even if there’s still a lot of things to work on as he looks to stamp his mark on the Black Cats ahead of the Championship season.

Grayson said: ‘It`s about getting into good habits and I think we showed a lot of good habits in the first hour playing how I`d like to play, but I still think there is a lot of work to be done.’

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