By Ben McNicol
A moment of magic from Ross Callachan was matched by a brilliant Guy Melamed strike as Hamilton and St Johnstone shared the spoils at the Fountain of Youth Stadium.
The recent League Cup winners dominated the opening half-hour but Callachan put Accies ahead against the run of play with a tremendous curling effort into the top corner from 25-yards out. There were no signs of the Saints still being in party mode after League Cup final victory on Sunday as they forced Ryan Fulton into a couple of fine first-half saves.
Melamed and Stevie May linked up well and some neat one touch passes as May created a chance for his strike partner, whose goal-bound effort was well blocked by Fulton. Up the other end, the home side managed to carve out their first sight of goal as Hakeem Odoffin headed Scott McMann’s corner just wide of Zander Clark’s post.
On the 37th minute, Callachan showed individual brilliance to break the deadlock, picking up the ball around 25-yards from goal before curling an absolute beauty into the top right-hand corner.
Hamilton came out the traps much, much better in the second half and the visitors came under a huge amount of pressure. Accies were unfortunate not to double their advantage when David Moyo’s strike rattled the woodwork.
Callum Davidson’s side pushed hard for an equaliser while Brian Rice’s looked to sit back and defend their narrow lead. However, with just a couple of minutes left of the clock, the visitors snatched a point through the lively Melamed as he incredibly brought down Liam Gordon’s long ball before slotting beyond Fulton. Here are three things we learned from the match.
St Johnstone started the game much better than Accies, but a tremendous strike against the run of play from former Saint Callachan was so nearly the difference in what would’ve been a priceless three points. The midfielder has been sensational for Rice’s side this season and his goal made it nine for the season.
The Israeli striker was definitely Saints best player. He was involved in near enough every attacking move and was deserving of a goal after an impressive all-round performance.
The draw was probably a fair reflection of the game and unfortunately for Hamilton that still wasn’t enough to take them off the foot of the Scottish Premiership table. They were on course for an important three points which would’ve seen them leapfrog both Kilmarnock and Ross County but it wasn’t to be.
St Johnstone will still believe they’ve got half a chance of finishing in the top six after the draw, leaving them five points behind sixth place St Mirren.
NTOF now offers a YouTube channel featuring exclusive interviews, post-match discussion, in-depth debate, and much more – LIKE and SUBSCRIBE and don’t miss any of our videos.