Derby County rescued a point against Wigan Athletic as Martyn Waghorn stuck with an injury time equaliser in a 1-1 draw at the DW Stadium.
The Latics opened the scoring late in the second half when substitute Joe Garner found the back of the net from close range.
The Rams continued to push looking for an important goal on the road and their efforts paid off in the third minute of injury time when Waghorn powered home from close range in the annual Boxing Day fixture.
The point ends a run of six defeats on the road without scoring for the Rams who will look to back to draw up with a win when they return to Pride Park Stadium on Monday night for their final game of 2019 against Charlton Athletic.
A quiet opening ten minutes played out at both ends with neither side creating an early chance. Then on he 14-minute mark, the opportunities came at once. First, Antonee Robinson was played through and crossed in from the left, but he whipped his effort on to the near post. Derby went on the counter-attack and quickly found Lawrence down the opposite flank, but his cross in was headed clear by Cedric Kipre.
Five minutes later, the home side came close again after winning a free-kick just outside the area. A well-worked set piece found Josh Windass in the six-yard box, but a instinctive save by Ben Hamer denied the close-range effort at the near post with the Rams’ keeper’s foot.
A free-kick for Derby ten minutes later was the visitor’s best opportunity of the opening half. Lawrence fizzed the free-kick in from the left to find Curtis Davis at the back post, but his header was directed into the hands of Jamie Jones.
Wigan continually tested the Rams’ defence in the half by firing balls down the channels, but they were dealt with by the Derby back-line. Down the other end, chances were sparse, however, Waghorn came close with ten minutes left to play after good build-up. Krystian Bielik pinged the ball to Lawrence who drove into the box before laying off to Waghorn, but the forward struck across goal and wide of the far post.
From the Rams’ kick-off to restart the game, the deadlock was almost broken. The ball was launched high in the air, and Waghorn ran in behind the keeper, as the ball took it’s time to come down, the Wigan defenders caught up and sent it out for a corner.
Derby continued to be livelier in the second half and with 20 minutes to go, substitute Jack Marriott came close from a long free kick. Jason Knight did brilliantly to win the ball back on the edge of the Derby box before winning a free-kick. The free kick was launched up the pitch and Marriott went one-on-one but dragged his effort wide.
However, it was the home side that took the lead with ten minutes to go. An initial cross in went through it’s intended target, but the Rams failed to clear the danger and Garner smashed in from close range.
For the second time this season, the Rams dealt the Latics a late blow, this time in the form of an equaliser. A long throw was flicked on by Davies and Marriott headed to Waghorn at the back post to smash in the leveller to send the Derby fans wild.
Wigan Athletic: Jones; Byrne, Kipre, Naismith, Robinson; Morsy (C), Evans; Pilkington (Garner, 64), Lowe, Jacobs; Windass (Williams, 64)
Unused Subs: Marshall, Dunkley, Macleod, Roberts, Massey
Derby County: Hamer; Bogle, Davies (C), Forsyth, Lowe; Knight (Whittaker, 84), Bielik (Bird, 44), Holmes, Lawrence; Waghorn, Martin (Marriott, 60)
Unused Subs: Roos, Wisdom, Dowell, Sibley