TIM Cahill enjoyed his longest stint on the park since his return to Millwall as Massimo Luongo rescued a point for QPR in Tuesday’s Championship action.
The 38-year-old came on in the 72nd minute for the Lions, but picked up a yellow card almost immediately before the Londoners held on for a 2-1 win.
Cahill has played just 36 regular minutes and some injury time in his five matches since joining the middle-of-the-table club in late January.
Socceroos and Millwall teammate James Meredith made a full appearance while fellow Australian Jackson Irvine was taken off after 59 minutes for Hull.
But the best Australian performance on Wednesday (AEDT) belonged to Luongo, whose 87th-minute header extended Derby’s winless run to six matches.
Andreas Weimann’s goal seven minutes before half-time looked like getting the Rams’ faltering promotion challenge back on track, but the Australian midfielder dampened their mood after nodding in Luke Freeman’s free-kick. Luongo, who also scored in his last outing 10 days ago, was left unchallenged and made no mistake to the delight of the majority of the Loftus Road crowd. It atoned for his earlier role in Weimann’s goal, brilliantly set up by on-loan Chelsea youngster Kasey Palmer.
Palmer turned away from Josh Scowen and went past Luongo before threading the ball through to Weimann, who fired past goalkeeper Alex Smithies. Meanwhile Bristol City skipper Bailey Wright avoided the ire of the referee in a fiery clash with his old club Preston North End, in which 10 cards were shown. City’s Aden Flint, who was sent off in the 91st minute, was among six players to enter the book in the final 11 minutes.
Preston’s 2-1 home win takes them to ninth place and leaves them just three points off Bristol and the final promotion play-off position. Mile Jedinak came on after an hour in Aston Villa’s 3-0 thumping of cellar dwellers Sunderland that cemented third spot on the table for the Birmingham club.
The Villans are four points behind second-placed Cardiff City, who continued their push for promotion with a 2-1 win over Barnsley.
Bolton’s trip to Reading and Nottingham Forest’s clash with Norwich City both ended in 1-1 draws.
Sheffield Wednesday fell 2-1 to visiting Ipswich Town, Fulham eased past Sheffield United 3-0, Cardiff held off Barnsley 2-1, Middlesborough edged out Birmingham 1-0 and Brentford knocked over Burton 2-0.
Elsewhere, it was a breakthrough day for former Brisbane Roar attacker Kwame Yeboah, who scored his maiden goal in Germany in Paderborn’s 1-1 draw with Magdeburg.