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  1. Phil Roscoe

Boro keep playoff hopes alive

Middlesbrough kept alive their playoff hopes last night with a 2-1 win over fellow promotion chasers Southampton.

It was an uphill task for Tony Mowbray's side with Saints taking the lead after 46 seconds. Rickie Lambert was released on the right, and his cross found Billy Sharp at the far post.

However Boro fought their way back into the match, and drew level on the stroke of half-time through Nicky Bailey's deflected shot from the edge of the box.

Then with just 13 minutes left, Merouane Zemmama's superb free-kick put the home side 2-1 ahead.

The result means second-placed Southampton will have to wait until next weekend's home clash with Coventry to clinch automatic promotion. Middlesbrough on the other hand will be hoping they can beat Watford away, and that Cardiff lose to Crystal Palace, in the race for sixth place.

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