Last Tuesday, Hamilton’s place in the Premiership next season was balancing on a knife edge as Hearts backed up their Scottish Cup win against Rangers with a convincing Edinburgh derby win at Easter Road.
Four days later, two remarkable results later, Accies have shown once again why they continue to defy the odds every year.
Hamilton backed up their incredible win at Ibrox on Wednesday night with a very important three points against Kilmarnock on Saturday, recording back-to-back wins for the first time since 2018. The result moves Accies out of the relegation spots and four points ahead of bottom side Hearts.
It may not have been the prettiest game of football you will ever see, but it was a performance full of effort, determination and team work that helped Brian Rice’s men score a last-gasp winner through Marios Ogkmpoe, despite only having ten-men on the park as Mickel Miller was dismissed with 12 minutes remaining.
The terrible conditions played a major part, with Accies boss Brian Rice saying that “The wind ruined the game”.
Both sides had early chances in what was an end-to-end first half. Eamon Brophy’s pass found Chris Burke after three minutes and he was denied by the feet of Luke Southwood.
Hamilton’s opportunity was definitely the better of the two as Stuart Findlay misjudged the flight of the ball to allow Marios Ogkmpoe a clear sight of goal, but he could only divert his effort straight at Laurentiu Branescu.
Wednesday nights hero David Moyo headed Lewis Smith’s cross over on the 17th minute before Brian Rice was forced into a substitution as the unwell Jamie Hamilton made way for Mickel Miller, with Alex Gogic filling in at centre-back.
Accies had to readjust just before half-time as Blair Alston came off with what looked like a groin problem. He was replaced by Will Collar.
The game was flat, with both sides lacking a creative spark. You certainly got the feeling that one goal would be more than enough to win the game and with the heavy wind, it wouldn’t have been a surprise to see it come from an individual error.
Accies brought on David Templeton to try and create more opportunities and the 32-year-old was involved in the action straight away as he combined with Aaron McGowan to set up Ogkmpoe.
His first effort was fantastically blocked by Kirk Broadfoot, and his second effort was well saved by Branescu.
Broadfoot should have put the visitors ahead when he connected with Burke’s corner on the 75th minute, but credit must go to Southwood who made another fantastic save.
The whole complexion of the game changed shortly after as Miller was sent off for a second bookable offence by referee Willie Collum.
Its fair to say everyone would have settled for a point from there onwards.
However, Accies stole all three points right at the death. A cross was collected by Ogkmpoe inside the box and the Greek was recklessly fouled by Findlay who tripped him up. The Accies number 99 dusted himself down and his powerful penalty just about crept over the line as Branescu came close to saving his side a point.
Full Time- Hamilton 1-0 Kilmarnock
Hamilton Accies: Southwood, McGowan (c), McMann, Alston (Collar, 40), Gogic, Moyo (Templeton 64), Want, Martin, L Smith, Hamilton (Miller, 20), Ogkmpoe
Subs Unused: Fulton, McKenna, Hunt, Winter
Kilmarnock: Branescu, O’Donnell, Hendrie (Hamalainen, 74), Power, McKenzie (Kiltie, 74), Dicker, Brophy (Connell, 86), Findlay, Broadfoot, Kabamba, Burke
Subs Unused: Koprivec, Millen, Del Fabro,Taylor
Referee- Willie Collum
Attendance- 2,145 (1,023 Away)
Yellow Cards- Want(14), Broadfoot(63), Miller(67, 78), Smith(72), O’Donnell(88)
Red Cards-Miller (78)