Crewe Alexandra forced Championship side Bolton Wanderers into extra-time but Jermaine Beckford’s two late goals proved crucial in a tight 3-2 victory for the visitors in the Capital One Cup.
The Railwaymen had enjoyed a wonderful start with the recalled Brad Inman opening the scoring in only the second minute courtesy of a superb finish past Andy Lonergan.
Full debutant Chris Atkinson went close to a second as Lonergan parried and Inman was similarly denied before Vadaine Oliver volleyed wide of an inviting target.
Bolton equalised just before the break after Darren Pratley headed in Liam Feeney’s cross.
The visitors thought they should have been awarded a penalty when substitute Lee Chung-yong was later challenged by Matt Tootle.
But another Feeney cross was helped on for Beckford to seemingly win the tie in the first minute of added time – only for substitute Marcus Haber to dramatically head an equaliser.
However, Beckford forced his second past Ben Garratt to eventually settle the contest during extra-time.
Crewe Alexandra: Garratt, Tootle, Ray (Leigh 77), Dugdale, Guthrie, Atkinson (Grant 87), Turton, Nolan, Waters, Oliver (Haber 69), Inman
subs (unused): Shearer, Cooper, Saunders, Molyneux
Goals: Inman (2), Haber (90)
Bolton Wanderers: Lonergan, Threlkeld, Ream, Pratley, Mills, Dervite, Feeney, Trotter (Danns 49), Beckford, Wilkinson (Mason 68), Lester (Lee Chung-yong 69)
subs (unused): Hughes, Wheater, Fitzsimons, Kamara
Goals: Pratley (40), Beckford (90, 107)
Ref: T. Harrington
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