St Mirren striker Jonathan Obika couldn’t hide his joy after the club defeated Hearts 1-0 at the Simple Digital Arena on Wednesday.

The London-born ace hit the game’s only goal to send the Buddies ninth in the table and two points clear of Hamilton in the relegation play-off place.

It was a huge night for St Mirren who, had they lost, could have traded places with the rock-bottom Jambos.

Obika struck the winner against Hearts on Wednesday (Photo by Ben Banks)

But it was a performance full of endeavour and spirit from the hosts, and ultimately that proved too much for Daniel Stendel’s side to handle.

The visitors seldom seemed like scoring on the night, and it was clear in the end that St Mirren were more up for the fight.

Obika took his goal very well under pressure from Hearts defender Clevid Dikamona and Craig Halkett, and afterwards he hailed his teammates for a strong collective effort.

He said: “It felt like a scrap. The boys showed themselves today and I’m proud of them. We have to follow this up and the next eight games are important for us.

Goodwin’s men are now up to ninth (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

“It was a six-pointer. We couldn’t lose and that’s what we felt like from training. Everyone was talking to each other saying ‘we’re not going to lose, we’re going for the win’.

“You could see the boys – it was like we had a different energy about us.

“Because we were strong, especially in the first half, you could see them getting a bit quieter and we knew we were on top. I was happy in the second half that we followed that up.”

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