Ipswich 3-3 Middlesbrough

Grant Leadbitter scored twice as Ipswich clawed their way back from 3-1 down to salvage a point against Middlesbrough at Portman Road.

Leadbitter's 20-yard strike put Ipswich ahead early on, but tap-ins from Andy Halliday and Scott McDonald gave Middlesbrough a half-time lead.

Andrew Taylor extended Boro's lead with a side-foot shot but Connor Wickham nodded home to give Ipswich hope.

Leadbitter secured a point from the spot after Lee Martin was fouled.

Victories in their last three games had given Ipswich hope of sneaking into the play-offs, and Leadbitter's early deflected drive put the hosts in a strong position to continue their hot streak.

But Paul Jewell's side imploded before the break, as Middlesbrough netted twice in 90 seconds.

Boro's first came through Halliday, who was left with a simple finish after Damien Delaney's sliced clearance left Ipswich keeper Arran Lee-Barrett stranded and bounced off the bar and into Halliday's path.

It got worse for Ipswich when McDonald made it two as Halliday turned provider, finding McDonald free inside the six-yard box and the striker making no mistake to net his tenth goal of the season.

Boro did not have to wait long for their third as they struck again in the 51st minute - Halliday was again the architect as he slid in Taylor, who collected the ball and finished in style past Lee-Barrett.

But Wickham showed why is so sought-after and, despite having two goals chalked off for offside, he eventually pulled one back after the hour mark when he met Jimmy Bullard's delivery with a thumping header.

Ipswich's comeback was complete when Leadbitter converted from the spot with 14 minutes left after Matthew Bates had fouled Martin.

The hosts could even have won it if not for two brilliant saves from Boro keeper Paul Smith, who denied Wickham then Damien Delaney in the latter stages.

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