A goalless display at the Madejski Stadium, where Luke Steele who was recalled in place of Heinz Muller.

The Reds, now without an away success since their South Yorkshire derby win at Sheffield Wednesday in mid-February, had one effort on target in the opening 45 minutes when Adam Hammill shot straight at Reading stopper Marcus Hahnemann but failed to test the Royals' defence in the second half.

Simon Davey's side remain in a perilous position, four places off the bottom of the standings and without a win in six games.

Brothers Noel and Stephen Hunt combined after three minutes, but the latter could only head over for the promotion-chasing hosts.

Anderson De Silva's right-footed volley from 25 yards drifted wide before Jon Macken fluffed a shot from 12 yards for the visitors.

Noel Hunt headed over from recalled strike partner Kitson's cross before Tabb's left-footed shot from the right edge of the area was well saved by Steele, who was making his eighth appearance of the season.

Kitson, who has netted once in six games since returning on loan from Stoke, failed to convert Stephen Hunt's corner after mis-hitting his shot from 12 yards.

Hammill then could not test Hahnemann from 20 yards as the Reading goalkeeper made a comfortable save before Andre Bikey headed over from six yards at the other end after Stephen Hunt's free-kick and Tabb was off target with a header from Kebe's cross.

Hahnemann saved De Silva's close-range effort and Liam Rosenior, back from suspension, shot wide early in the second period.

Kitson headed straight at Steele and then headed over as Reading were again frustrated in attack.

De Silva shot wide from a free-kick before Tabb was again denied by Steele and Shane Long headed over from Jem Karacan's cross.

Kebe volleyed over from six yards and Steele made a straightforward save from Kitson as Reading struggled in front of goal once more.

Andranik Teymourian shot wide three times from long range at the other end and Kitson saw another header saved by Steele as the game ended in a stalemate.

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Ian Wilkinson

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