It has been a tough week for Brian Rice’s Hamilton side, who were hit was a coronavirus scare and things just got that little worse as they were defeated by 10-man Kilmarnock at Rugby Park.
Eamon Brophy was sent off after 23 minutes against his former club for a rash challenge on Scott McMann, but credit must go to Alex Dyer’s side who battled away in the second-half and ran out deserved 2-1 winners courtesy of Nicke Kabamba’s strike just before the hour mark.
Greg Kiltie was the man who opened the scoring after 10 minutes before Hakeem Odoffin slammed home his second goal of the season.
Hamilton were forced into a couple of changes due to Covid-19 protocols as Kyle Munro and Ross Callachan dropped out while Alex Dyer named the same side that were narrowly beaten at Pittodrie last weekend.
Killie started the much better side and it was no surprise to see them race into an early lead as a fantastic run from Chris Burke broke through the Accies defence after nine minutes, but after he was chopped down and Nick Walsh played the advantage, Kiltie took the ball in his strike and slammed the ball into the bottom corner beyond Ryan Fulton.
Hamilton offered next to nothing as an attacking threat until Odoffin equalised in the 18th minute. David Templeton’s excellent corner found the defender unmarked six yards out and after his initial header was well saved by Danny Rogers, he slammed home the equaliser point-blank range.
The equaliser seemed to boost the visitors’ confidence and they almost went ahead soon after but David Moyo’s tame effort was easily smothered by Rodgers.
And soon after Brophy was sent off for a late challenge.
The former Accies man over stretched to block Scott McMann’s clearance but nastily caught the defender and Walsh couldn’t have pulled his red card out any quicker.
It was expected that Hamilton would have kicked on and secured their third consecutive away win of the season.
However, in reality, the red card was probably the worst thing that happened to them as they seriously struggled to create opportunities and break down a well-organised Killie defence.
Kilmarnock were certainly the most threatening side as half-time approached, with Burke blazing an audacious effort over the bar before Kabamba hilariously fell over the ball after being played through on goal.
The striker made amends for his recent mistake and he eventually got his goal, putting Kilmarnock back in front in the 57th minute as his powerful effort flew past Ryan Fulton.
Hamilton made a number tactical changes as they chased an equaliser, but they were nothing short of woeful and will undoubtedly be disappointed that Danny Rodgers wasn’t tested once in the whole second-half.
Their best chance fell to the feet of substitute Charlie Trafford as he tried his luck from range on 66 minutes after some nice play for the visitors, but it deflected wide of Rogers’ post.
Aaron Tshibola nearly wrapped up the three points with 10 minutes remaining as Killie cleverly caught Accies off guard with a quick through in, however Ryan Fulton came to the rescue for Hamilton again with a smart save.
Accies huffed and puffed but ultimately never looked like getting the equaliser.
The Ayrshire outfit comfortably seen out the game and moved themselves up to seventh place in the Scottish Premiership table.
Full Time: Kilmarnock 2-1 Hamilton
KILMARNOCK: Danny Rogers, Ross Millen, Kirk Broadfoot, Stuart Findlay, Calum Waters, Aaron Tshibola, Gary Dicker, Greg Kiltie (Pinnock 90), Chris Burke, (McKenzie 81) Eamonn Brophy, Nicke Kabamba
HAMILTON: Ryan Fulton, Hakeem Odoffin, Scott McMann, Shaun Want, Jamie Hamilton (Johnson 61), Scott Martin, (Smith 56), Will Collar, (Trafford 68), Reegan Mimnaugh, David Templeton, Mario Ogkmpoe(Winter 68), David Moyo