London (AFP) – Jordan Rhodes fired Middlesbrough a step closer to the Premier League as the Scotland striker’s dramatic double sealed a 2-1 win over already-relegated Bolton on Saturday.
Aitor Karanka’s side fell behind to Josh Vela’s 61st minute goal, but former Blackburn star Rhodes levelled in the 73rd minute and struck again in stoppage-time at the Macron Stadium.
Middlesbrough’s sixth successive victory kept the leaders two points clear of second placed Burnley and three ahead of third placed Brighton with four matches remaining in the race for promotion from the Championship.
With Brighton having won 5-0 against Fulham on Friday, Burnley responded with a hard-fought 2-1 victory at Birmingham.
George Boyd’s 31st-minute drive put Sean Dyche’s team ahead, but Jacques Maghoma headed an equaliser for the hosts 10 minutes into the second half.
Burnley kept their composure and Boyd set up Andre Gray for a 77th-minute winner which lifted the Clarets back two points above Brighton.
Teenage forward Andre Dozzell marked his Ipswich debut with the equaliser as they held play-off hopefuls Sheffield Wednesday to a 1-1 draw at Hillsborough after Fernando Forestieri had given the Owls the lead.
Seventh placed Cardiff couldn’t take advantage of Wednesday’s slip as they were held to a 0-0 draw by QPR that leaves the south Wales club five points adrift of the play-off places.
Johnny Russell’s header earned fifth placed Derby a 1-0 victory at second bottom Charlton, who are 11 points from safety and will be relegated if they lose at Bolton on Tuesday.
Third bottom Milton Keynes Dons, nine points from safety, also look to be heading for the drop after a 1-1 draw at Preston.
Jermaine Beckford’s first-half opener was cancelled out by Nicky Maynard before the Dons had goalkeeper Cody Cropper sent off and Alex Revell was forced to go in goal, with the striker saving the resulting penalty from Joe Garner.
Chris Wood scored twice as Leeds edged Reading 3-2 on Royals boss Brian McDermott’s return to Elland Road.
Michael Hector’s first-half opener for Reading was cancelled out by Toumani Diagouraga before Wood headed Leeds in front.
Substitute Deniss Rakels restored Reading’s lead in the 82nd minute but Wood pounced on a mistake by Jake Cooper to take Leeds into the top half of the table.
Nahki Wells netted his 17th goal of the season and Matt Kilgallon scored an own goal as Huddersfield won 2-0 against Blackburn for their first success at Ewood Park since 1986.
Rotherham extended their unbeaten run to nine matches with a goalless draw at home to Nottingham Forest and Bristol City drew 1-1 with Brentford.