Completely untroubled for the opening 25 minutes or so but then made two terrific saves to deny Fabio Borini before half time. Made more top saves after the break and was unlucky to have been beaten twice. Marshall has really flourished at this level and is showing no signs of abating just yet.
Like John, defended well but will be disappointed to have seen his side crumble late on.
Defended well, until the closing stages, when Cardiff's back four were all over the shop and Sunderland pounced to nick a draw they did not really deserve.
Was directly at fault for Sunderland's first goal, souring an otherwise efficient performance.
K. Théophile Catherine
The fullback got forward at every opportunity and sent some dangerous crosses into the area, as well as defending with poise and vigor.
Played in several dangerous deliveries and crosses and ran riot down the wing all game. Was taken off in the second half leaving no doubt in the minds of Cardiff fans as to how important he was on the day.
The 22-year-old was in imperious form, opening the scoring with his fourth goal of the season and generally wreaking havoc for the Sunderland defense in his attacking midfield role. Set Fraizer Campbell up for the second, too.
Will be as frustrated as anyone to see Sunderland peg Cardiff back but played his defensive role well for the most part.
Took several long shots in front of goal, threatening Mannone at times, and also passed the ball around well.
Headed wide early on and crossed well for most of the game. Ultimately, however, Whittingham and co. should have done a lot better in the first half, when their dominance was at its peak and they could have extended their lead even further.
Was involved in almost all of his side's chances and robbed Valentin Roberge of the ball before giving it to Mutch for the opener. Gratefully received the ball from Mutch to tap in the second.
Made several important saves that, in the end, were every bit as crucial as Sunderland's late goals in earning them an unlikely point.
Committed several fouls and offered too little for his side. Looks every bit the bad signing many predicted when Paolo Di Canio brought him to the Stadium of Light.
Lost the ball for the first goal and did not do enough to recover his performance. Almost equalized with a stunning, long-distance volley but that, ultimately, meant nothing to his side - or the result.
The undoubted scapegoat if Gus Poyet needed one, the Sunderland defender made error after error, giving the ball away on countless occasions.
Offered more going forward than he did at the back, though this was not his most impressive game in a Black Cats shirt.
His passing, crosses and set pieces were slightly off the mark today and, for a man whose main threat comes from those situations, the Swede should have done a lot better for his side.
Was poor throughout but came to life for Sunderland's first goal, picking the ball up in midfield and setting up Steve Fletcher. That moment sparked the comeback so the Italian can go home with his head held reasonably high tonight.
Was not as dangerous as in his side's previous games but still offered a reasonable passing rhythm in midfield, especially in the second half.
Lunged in on Mutch in the first half to earn himself yet another yellow card. Did little of note otherwise and did not look like much of a leader for his side.
Was denied by two top-quality Marshall saves in the first half and was unlucky not to have found the net. Prompted and probed all along, despite his lack of anything to show for it. Came off at half time and was taken to hospital with illness.
Like Dossena, the American striker is a signing Sunderland fans will look upon with scorn this season. His contribution in most games has been limited, but today it was even worse. His miss from three yards summed up his evening.
Brought on by Poyet in the second half and helped his side control things in the middle of the park.
Was introduced late on but will ultimately be remembered as the hero for scoring his side's late equalizer. Sunderland looked as though they had no chance of earning a point for the majority of the encounter but the fighting spirit shown at the end by the likes of Colback and co. suggests their fight against relegation is by no means a foregone conclusion.
Showing Altidore how it is done, Fletcher pounced on the ball in the box like a tiger to pull a goal back for Sunderland. Reminded Black Cats fans what they were missing when he was out for several months with injury.