Whites held to a draw in the final outing of their 2015/16 pre-season campaign
Wanderers brought down the curtain on their pre-season campaign with a 2-2 draw against Charlton Athletic at Macron Stadium on Friday evening.
The Whites opened the scoring half way through the first period with Darren Pratley nodding home a Stephen Dobbie free-kick, but the visitors were level shortly before the break as Tony Watt slotted home.
The hosts did retake the lead just 22 seconds after the restart through substitute Liam Feeney with his first touch of the ball, only for Charlton to earn a share of the spoils with another Watt strike on the hour mark.
Darren Pratley returned to skipper the side after a brief spell on the sidelines, while Zach Clough was also back from injury for Wanderers.
Dorian Dervite and Lawrie Wilson meanwhile lined up against their former side.
Wanderers started brightly, with Zach Clough and Gary Madine in the thick of the action inside the opening five minutes of the clash.
Charlton were to enjoy the first real opportunities of the game however, with Ben Amos firstly being called upon to deny Tony Watt when one-on-one with the Addicks man before pulling off a smart reflex save at the death to keep out Patrick Bauer’s header.
Their early chances visibly bred confidence amongst the visitors, but Wanderers almost hit back in the 15th minute as Madine chested the ball into the path of the on-running Mark Davies, only for the midfielder to see his half volley calmly collected by Nick Pope.
Charlton were still putting the Whites under pressure however, with the towering figure of Simon Makienok causing problems in and around the Bolton penalty area.
Out of nowhere however, Wanderers took the lead through Darren Pratley, the midfielder rising highest in the box to nod home Stephen Dobbie’s free-kick with 24 minutes on the clock.
Buoyed by their opener, the Trotters almost had a second just after the half hour mark as Mark Davies’ thunderous free-kick was only kept away from the goalmouth by a stubborn Charlton wall.
With the half time whistle growing near, Bolton continued to push forward with Madine seeing numerous long range efforts narrowly elude the goalmouth.
With just three minutes of the half to go however, the Addicks were level as Watt sprung Wanderers’ offside trap, being left with the task of slotting home beneath the advancing Ben Amos to ensure that the scores were all square at the break.
Introducing Feeney at the break, the winger wasted no time in making his mark on the game as he put Wanderers back in front after just 22 seconds on the pitch, slamming home from a tight angle after good work from Mark Davies.
A lightening quick start from the Whites, it almost became even better as Wilson lofted a teasing cross into the box but an acrobatic Zach Clough couldn’t finish the well worked move.
The Addicks were finding themselves on the backfoot, but an injury to Derik in the 55th minute halted played and saw the introduction of academy graduate Rob Holding into the fray.
The break in play appeared to stunt Wanderers slightly, and Charlton took full advantage on the hour mark as Watt struck again from a similar position to pull the visitors level once more with Pratley amongst the madness as the final touch was struck.
Feeney should have restored Bolton’s lead moments after the restart after finding himself unmarked a matter of yards from goal, but the winger somehow put it over the crossbar.
A beautifully crafted team move in the 72nd minute almost allowed Madine the opportunity to score his fifth goal of pre-season as, following Pratley’s well-played control, he lifted the ball to the striker whose final effort flew narrowly over.
Clough was handed a glorious chance to put Bolton back in front with 13 minutes to go as he made a run downfield, squared the ball to Feeney who whipped it back into his feet, but the fingertips of Pope pushed his shot around the post with the home fans already cheering a goal.
As the game entered its final stages, both sides were in the thick of it with Feeney putting an effort wide through a crowded penalty area, but the game ended all square at the final whistle.
Bolton: Amos, Wilson, Dervite, Derik (Holding 55), Moxey, Vela (Danns 67), Pratley (Trotter 74), Davies (Spearing 74), Clough (Heskey 79), Dobbie (Feeney 46), Madine
Subs not used: Fitzsimons, Taylor
Charlton: Pope, Charles-Cook (Holmes-Dennis 85), Bauer (Bergdich 63), Diarra, Fox (Sarr 63), Gudmundsson, Ba, Kashi (Jackson 63), Cousins (Ceballos 46), Watt, Makienok (Ahearne-Grant 85)
Subs not used: Mitov, Lennon, Kennedy, Ghoochannejhad