Craig Conway's late winner with a low drive gave third-placed Cardiff City a 3-2 win over Portsmouth, lifting the Bluebirds to within a point of the Championship's automatic promotion places. Four minutes into the second half, Greg Halford had given Pompey a 2-1 lead, but Mark Hudson's header equalised before Conway fired in.
"We were bright and alive and worked hard for things today," Cardiff's satisfied manager, Malky Mackay, said.
But Middlesbrough, fourth, slipped up badly at bottom club Coventry City, who were inspired by Alex Nimely, on loan from Manchester City. "I am so pleased that we could get him under the radar," Sky Blues manager Andy Thorn admitted. Boro lost 3-1 and finished with nine men, Kevin Thomson (39 minutes) and Julio Arca (90) both sent off.
Hull moved up to fifth, Robbie Brady's goal just after the hour earning a 1-0 win at Reading, who drop out of the top six. Birmingham City replace them, Curtis Davies heading two goals in their 3-0 defeat of Watford.
Two goals in the final five minutes at Bloomfield Road saw Blackpool come from behind to beat Crystal Palace 2-1, while the 71st-minute sending off of Ipswich Town goalkeeper Alex McCarthy was the turning point at Leeds. United were trailing 1-0, but Ipswich panicked and Leeds rallied to won 3-1.
Burnley and Derby County drew 0-0 at Turf Moor, Will Buckley scored twice as Brighton, at the end of a week which saw five of their players arrested and released on bail by police investigating an alleged sex attack on a woman, stayed in touch with the top six with a 2-1 win over Peterborough United at London Road.
At the bottom, Darius Henderson's third hat-trick of the season saw Millwall win 3-1 at Barnsley, while Bristol City's troubles also eased a little with a 2-1 defeat of fellow strugglers Doncaster Rovers, who had Habib Beye sent off.
Jordan Rhodes' 29th goal of the season helped Huddersfield Town come from 2-0 down to beat visitors Brentford 3-2 and move into the automatic promotion places.
None of the top three won. Leaders Southend lost 2-1 at Shrewsbury, Crawley go second after a 1-1 draw at Plymouth, Argyle moving out of the bottom two, and Cheltenham lost 2-0 to a Bristol Rovers keen to impress new manager Mark McGhee.
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