Bent hits match-winning brace
Ipswich striker Darren Bent scored a magnificent match-winning brace at Burnley to keep the pressure on Coca-Cola Championship leaders Wigan.
The 20-year-old scored one in each half at Turf Moor - the second a spectacular individual strike - as his side continue their fine run.
Joe Royle's side were six points behind the the leaders before the clash with Steve Cotterill's men - and he will be confident of reaching top spot soon if Bent maintains his form.
Burnley could not build on their magnificent win at Leeds in midweek, and suffered a blow early on when they lost experienced centre-back Frank Sinclair to a leg injury.
The makeshift defence struggled to cope in his absence, and midfielder Graham Branch played in the heart of the defence as Mike Duff was suspended.
Ipswich's aspirations of promotion this season are based on their promising youngster Bent, whose two strikes had the class of a top-flight marksman.
However, most of their attacks start from veteran Jim Magilton, who sits in central midfield and distributes with intelligence.
The 35-year-old hit the bar with a free-kick from distance early on after Bent had lured John McGreal into a foul. But the visitors were not made to wait long before they opened the scoring.
For all Ipswich's slick passing football, the opener came from a huge kick from keeper Kelvin Davis. Bent latched onto the punt and was in the clear before finishing with confidence past Brian Jensen.
It was the England Under-21 international's seventh strike of the season and his ability - and tireless running for team-mates - will surely trouble Premiership defences should his side get promoted.
He had showed his unselfish side in the opening moments of the game when he set up strike-partner Shefki Kuqi from 10 yards out - but the Finland forward blazed over without conviction.
The opener was a setback for the home side as they had their best chance to score themselves seconds before the goal.
Drissa Diallo gifted Richard Duffy a run on goal but the player on loan from Portsmouth dithered and Kevin Horlock got back to challenge.
The Clarets, whose next few results could determine what they play for this season, started to press forward after Bent's opener.
Skipper Robbie Blake thought he had scored an equaliser three minutes after his side went behind when he was put through by Tony Grant. The 28-year-old finished with superbly but was ruled just offside.
Davis struggled to hold drives from Amadou Sanokho and Mo Camara just before the break - but was lucky that both parries went to safety.
Aside from these long-distance efforts, Ipswich's defence looked unlikely to be troubled.
The home side were reduced to lame penalty shouts, the strongest on the stroke of half-time when Richard Naylor tussled with Duffy - but the Burnley midfielder was penalised for the foul.
Indeed, it was the visitors who looked like adding to their lead, such was their dominance.
Led by Magilton, the midfield never allowed Burnley a moment on the ball. This tactic did earn Magilton a booking for a foul on Tony Grant. Miller was also cautioned for a trip on Duffy.
And Bent's moment of class after 65 minutes sealed the points for his side. He found himself side on the right with team-mates in the penalty area but cut inside and unleashed an unstoppable drive that found the roof of the net.
Burnley tried to fight their way back, Micah Hyde going close with a header from Camara's cross - but Bent's double was enough for the win.
Bent could have bagged a hat-trick late on but fired straight at Jensen. He also set up Tommy Miller in injury time but Jensen saved well.