Away league match played on 13 January 2013.
Kicked off at 2:00 PM

The first league tie of 2013 saw St Mirrenoff “first foot” Cadzow Hamilton at the Palace Sports Grounds. Saints confidence was high coming into the game, buoyed by a 5-1 friendly win only last week. A welcome three points were gained, along with a feeling of justice and closure after what was a shambolic performance by the Paisley team at the same venue earlier in the season.

The away team started the game slowly with a number of stray passes allowing Hamilton the opportunity to apply pressure in the early stages, without really testing goalkeeper Willie Rankine, resplendent in his new all purple kit.

After a scrappy 10 minutes Saints managed to get a hold of the ball with some neat passing triangles between Chris Dailly, David Bannermann and Craig Muir opening up Cadzow down the left, allowing some pressure on the Hamilton goal. Playmaker Muir was getting on the ball more and more and played in Bannerman for the first real chance on goal after 15 minutess, forcing the Hamilton goalkeeper into a decent save.

A late challenge on Muir from a Hamilton midfielder started a short period of sustained free kicks in the first half where good deliveries from Dailly and David Wilson tested the Hamilton defence without an end product. All the forward attacking play was coming from St Mirrenoff, with Robert Hillcoat making good forward runs and a few half chances coming his way.

It was only a matter of time before the first goal came and it arrived on 35 mins courtesy of an unfortunate OG from Hamilton's towering midfielder. Wilson floated in a delightful free-kick from deep which proved too difficult to defend and the hapless Cadzow man headed into his own net.

With the first half drawing to a close Hamilton were still giving Saints food for thought with some long balls to their quick-footed front men. The Saints defence, however, coped admirably, superbly marshalled by Grant Elliott and Fraser Gray. 

After the break the away men again looked in the mood. Combative midfielder Gary Clark and team captain Wilson both started some good attacking moves and on 55 minutes Hillcoat got his just rewards for all his hard work with the second goal. A long kick out from keeper Rankine outwitted the Hamilton defence and found its way into Hillcoat’s path where a nice first touch to set himself and a lovely finish doubled Saints’ lead.

The team in white made their first sub on the 65 minute mark when right midfielder Sean Ritchie made way for veteran Craig Sinclair to add some fresh legs and energy. At the same time Hamilton had decided to change things and made a couple of subs to give them a more attacking impetus and decided to throw everything they had at the away team.

After 10 minutes of sustained attack the 1st goal for the home team arrived. A moment of slackness cost the visitors when a good delivery from the right found the unmarked runner from midfield in the centre of the penalty box and a tidy glanced header made it 2-1.

Cadzow sniffed blood after the goal and only some superb defending from the visitors ensured that the one goal cushion remained. A man-of-the-match performance from Elliott, and great work from his defensive partners Gray, Dailly and Chris Adam meant that Rankine was rarely called into action.

Alan McKean was brought on late on to provide some extra defensive cover and Gary Clark made way for wide man Ryan Keenan to give the tiring away team a pacy forward option as the clock ran down. Hamilton threw long balls forward late on, hoping to snatch the elusive 2nd goal, however saints held on to collect a valuable and hard fought 3 points.

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