Rotherham produced an astonishing recovery to wipe out a three-goal deficit in the final seven minutes and earn an unlikely 3-3 draw with Derby in the Sky Bet Championship.
The Millers looked dead and buried after 65 minutes at the New York Stadium as Tom Ince’s brace and a Chris Martin tap-in put the Rams in cruise control.
But the hosts rallied and after Danny Ward had scored in the 83rd minute, a Leon Best double in the 88th and the first minute of time added on produced a point.
Neil Warnock’s influence continues to take hold at the South Yorkshire club as this result followed three successive wins and they have taken seven points from games against Sheffield Wednesday, Middlesbrough and now the Rams, though they remain in the bottom three.
The Rams will see this as a defeat, given their capitulation, but they hang on to their position in the top six.
Confidence in the Millers camp was understandably high owing to their recent run and they had a great chance to take the lead inside the opening five minutes.
Kirk Broadfoot’s long punt down the middle saw Danny Ward race clear on goal but his low effort was superbly stopped by Scott Carson.
There was some more fantastic goalkeeping at the other end just moments later as Lee Camp brilliantly palmed Ince’s shot from eight yards away in a pulsating opening.
Derby took control from there, dominating by flooding the midfield and causing trouble with deep runners.
But they were restricted to efforts from distance, with Bradley Johnson and Jeff Hendrick sending efforts wide.
That was until first-half injury time presented their best chance as a slick move saw Martin find himself with time and space in the Millers area, but his low shot was again brilliantly kept out by Camp.
Half-time proved the only respite Rotherham had as Derby came out after the break and blitzed their opponents with three goals in 10 minutes.
Ince broke the deadlock in the 55th minute when a poor Danny Collins clearance fell to him on the edge of the box and he steered into the bottom corner.
Eight minutes later Martin, who had moments earlier missed a sitter, made amends when he hooked home from close range following good work by Jeff Hendrick and Cyrus Christie.
And with over 2,500 Derby fans still celebrating, they were back off their seats when a horribly short backpass by Collins saw Martin win the 50-50 battle with Camp and Ince rolled into an empty net.
That appeared to be that until the Millers produced something special, delivering their own three-goal salvo.
Danny Ward got things going when he rolled in following Grant Ward’s through-ball before Best bundled home his first goal for the club at a corner with two minutes of normal time to play.
Then in the first minute of time added on, Danny Ward hooked a cross into the box and Best powered a header home from close range to seal a magnificent recovery.
Rotherham boss Warnock, who has delivered 10 points in the last four games to put his side right in the survival mix, has been around long enough to know that it was a stolen point.
And he hails the comeback as the result of the season.
“I can’t think of another comeback as good as that, but I forget,” he said.
“It’s the sweetest because we were playing against a very good team and the players they have got and that’s why I am enjoying the challenge.
“They will be going home thinking they have lost the game, you shouldn’t concede three goals in the final 10 minutes.
“This is the result of the season, never mind the day. I don’t think there will be another one like this. We were 3-0 down against Derby County, with the players they have got, and have got a point.”
He added: “I don’t know what I can say that I have not said before. I am so proud of them.
“If we had lost 3-0 I still would have said, ‘Well done lads, I am proud of you for this week’.
“There would have been no rollockings today, they were just better than us.
“They have given me absolutely everything. When you see that camaraderie, you don’t get that every often, it’s great to see.”
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