Barrow 3 - 3 Bolton

BARROW suffered last kick agony as Antoni Sarcevic’s stoppage time strike denied the Bluebirds a memorable victory.

The Holker Street outfit were within 30 seconds of a first Football League win for 48 years until the former Plymouth star broke home hearts.

Barrow’s players sunk to the pitch in disbelief after throwing away a 3-1 lead within the opening 20 minutes.

The Bluebirds, in front of Ian Evatt - the man who took AFC to the National League crown last season, made a dream start scoring inside the first 60 seconds.

Wanderers conceded a free kick just outside the penalty area and Chris Taylor’s low, right footed free kick was too accurate for Billy Crellin.

Taylor was involved in the Bluebirds doubling their lead three minutes later

This time the one-time Trotter couldn’t get his shot away.

Instead, the ball broke to Mike Jones lurking on the edge of the area and he thundered an unstoppable rising drive beyond shell-shocked Billy Crellin.

A Josh Kay foul after 17 minutes led to Wanderers hitting back.

Ali Crawford’s great free kick was met by on loan Peter Kioso who headed in from six yards. But Barrow fired straight back to lead 3-1.

This time Taylor played in the unmarked Dior Angus inside the penalty area and the forward finished with an superb angled right foot shot from 15 yards.

The car horns on Wilkie Road celebrating the latest goal were sweet music to the ear’s of AFC’s caretaker managerial staff.

Barrow should then have put the outcome beyond doubt after 25 minutes as the Wanderers defence went walkabout once more.

This time a long ball over the top allowed Angus to race away from Ryan Delaney.

Crellin forced the AFC striker wide of the target but he managed to square the ball for tormentor-in-chief Taylor whose rising effort from the edge of the area flew just over the cross bar.

Harry Brockbank was booked as Bolton’s frustrations grew.

Five minutes from half time Bolton were again back within one goal after having a penalty appeal turned down for Kay’s apparent push on Kioso.

Kioso also headed wide before Wanderers did find a way through.

Arthur Gnahouha’s excellent left wing centre was headed in from six yards by Eoin Doyle - last season’s top divisional scorer with Swindon Town.

Barrow were forced into an interval change as Harrison Biggins replaced danger man Taylor.

And they suffered a further in jury blow 10 minutes into the second period as Scott Quigley limped off to be replaced by Jayden Reid.

Perhaps understandably chances were fewer in number after the break.

Crawford’s delivery from set-pieces always posed a threat but defences at both ends were now much tighter than they had been.

There were still, however, plenty of hefty challenges and ex Wanderer Yoan Zouma went into referee Wright’s notebook after 57 minutes.

It was largely one-way traffic on Joel Dixon’s goal as Bolton sought an equaliser.

And the pressure finally told when skipper Sarcevic drilled a low shot home in the 95th minute to salvage a draw for the former Premier League outfit.

Barrow: Dixon, Zouma, Platt, Brough, Barry, Chris Taylor (Biggins),Angus, Jones., Jason Taylor, Quigley (Reid), Kay (Brown). Unused substitutes: Hird, Maloney, James

Bolton: Crellin, Baptiste, Almeida Santos, Delaney, Kioso, Sarcevic, Comley, Brockbank (Gordon), Crawfor (Darcyat), Doyle, Gnahoua. Unusued substitutes: Taft, Hickman, Mascoll, Greenidge, Tutte