Hull manager Iain Dowie was coy about his future after Saturday's 1-0 defeat by Sunderland effectively relegated the Tigers from the Barclays Premier League.

Darren Bent's seventh-minute goal coupled with West Ham's 3-2 victory over Wigan left Hull six points adrift of safety with two games left and with a vastly inferior goal difference.

Dowie, who was only given a contract until the end of the season when he replaced Phil Brown last month, said: "It's not a decision for me. I've never walked away from a challenge in my life. It is a huge challenge here but it's one the powers that be will have a decision to make."

He added: "I know what I do every day in work, I know the way in which I train, I know my CV stands up to scrutiny in terms of play-offs and what I've done with different clubs."

Another woeful start was not what Hull's situation called for and they could have been behind before Bent got on the end of Kenwyne Jones' header to put Sunderland in front seven minutes in.

Gradually the hosts responded and they were unlucky when Anthony Gardner's header from point-blank range hit Craig Gordon in the chest.

But Hull only had themselves to blame for not drawing level four minutes before half-time. A foul by Hull old boy Michael Turner on Geovanni brought a penalty but Jimmy Bullard did not strike the ball cleanly and it bounced away off Gordon's post.

Both sides then found themselves down to 10 men after an ugly incident in first-half stoppage time when Jozy Altidore and Alan Hutton tangled on the touchline. Hutton reacted foolishly to what he felt was a bad challenge by throwing the ball at his opponent, provoking Altidore into a headbutt in response.

Dowie continued: "I'm bitterly disappointed. It's a dark dressing room in there. It's very disappointing for a great region. The fans were absolutely sensational. They have come in great numbers and supported us magnificently in difficult times and we apologise to them."

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Topics:
Jimmy Bullard
Sunderland
Michael Turner
Anthony Gardner
Football
Jozy Altidore
Kenwyne Jones
Premier League
Wigan Athletic
Alan Hutton
Darren Bent
Hull City
Geovanni
Craig Gordon