James McClean's equaliser for Wigan was his third goal of the campaign
Wigan battled to a point with a rearguard display against Watford but remain six points from safety at the bottom of the Championship as their dismal run extended to just one win in 17 games.
The Hornets were on the front foot from the start and gave their play-off hopes a boost when Keinan Davis fired in his sixth goal of the season just before half-time.
The Latics were neat and constructive in their build-up but offered very little in the final third as they sought their first away win in eight games.
They conjured an equaliser on 51 minutes as substitute Callum Lang crossed for James McClean to find the top corner with a superb header from the edge of the area.
Tempers flared on the touchline late in the game after Joao Pedro's idea of returning the ball to Wigan after an injury stoppage was to put it out of play close to the visitors' corner flag, sparking an angry confrontation between the two managers, with Watford boss Chris Wilder booked as a result.
Watford had given new manager Wilder his first win with a 3-0 victory over Birmingham on Tuesday but they struggled to break down a determined Latics defence, despite the visitors losing defender Charlie Hughes after just 12 minutes, replaced by Arsenal loanee Omar Rekik.
Jeremy Ngakia fired a shot narrowly wide, and Danel Sinani replied in kind as Wigan staged a rare foray forward in the first half.
A stubborn defensive effort by Shaun Maloney's men was undone just before half-time as Davis played a one-two with Pedro and with the opposition expecting a cross, cut back onto his left foot and drifted a shot beyond Ben Amos in the Wigan goal.
McClean's equaliser set up an intriguing final half-hour as Watford pressed for the winner and the Latics looked dangerous on the break.
Imran Louza struck a post with a speculative 25-yard effort and forced a sharp save from Amos but the Hornets were lacking the guile to forge clear chances.
Wigan looked a threat on the counter-attack in the later stages, and could have snatched it had Max Power made the most of a five-on-two break, or had Lang's touch not deserted him when he was played in by Sinani.
The game ended with a round of boos from the Watford support as they missed a chance to make further inroads into the five-point gap to sixth-placed Millwall, while Wigan remain bottom, five points from safety.
- Line-upsMatch StatsLive Text
- 1Bachmann22PorteousSubstituted forAsprillaat 75'minutes15Cathcart44Hoedt2NgakiaSubstituted forM Gasparat 64'minutes6LouzaBooked at 90mins25BacunaSubstituted forAssombalongaat 64'minutes11Koné12SemaSubstituted forMorrisat 87'minutes10João Pedro7DavisBooked at 89mins
- 3M Gaspar18Asprilla21Araújo26Hamer27Kabasele34Assombalonga42Morris
- 12Amos32HughesSubstituted forRekikat 12'minutesBooked at 29mins29CaulkerSubstituted forLangat 45'minutes2Nyambe27DarikwaBooked at 67mins8PowerBooked at 29mins4Naylor11McClean22TiéhiSubstituted forAasgaardat 75'minutes25SinaniBooked at 45mins10KeaneSubstituted forMagennisat 71'minutes
Referee:Graham ScottAttendance:18,523Match StatsHome TeamWatfordAway TeamWiganPossessionHome55%Away45%ShotsHome17Away6Shots on TargetHome3Away2CornersHome5Away4FoulsHome10Away10Live Text Post update
Match ends, Watford 1, Wigan Athletic 1.
Second Half ends, Watford 1, Wigan Athletic 1.
Attempt blocked. João Pedro (Watford) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Britt Assombalonga.
Imrân Louza (Watford) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Imrân Louza (Watford).
Thelo Aasgaard (Wigan Athletic) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Attempt saved. Ismaël Koné (Watford) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Imrân Louza.
Corner, Watford. Conceded by Omar Rekik.
Foul by Keinan Davis (Watford).
Omar Rekik (Wigan Athletic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Keinan Davis (Watford) is shown the yellow card.
Substitution, Watford. James Morris replaces Ken Sema.
Attempt saved. Callum Lang (Wigan Athletic) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Josh Magennis.
Craig Cathcart (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Josh Magennis (Wigan Athletic).
Ken Sema (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Tendayi Darikwa (Wigan Athletic).
Delay over. They are ready to continue.
Delay in match because of an injury Yáser Asprilla (Watford).
Foul by Imrân Louza (Watford).
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