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Stuart Kettlewell hails Ross County fighting spirit

Ross County co-manager Stuart Kettlewell praised his players’ fighting spirit after Billy McKay’s stoppage-time equaliser salvaged a 1-1 home draw with St Johnstone.

Steve May’s sixth goal of the season since returning to Saints in the summer looked like pushing the Staggies nearer to the drop zone.

But a dramatic late leveller from McKay in the fourth minute of stoppage time rescued a point for the hosts.

Kettlewell said: “We feel it shows massive character and how much the players care, that they wanted to get something out of the game.

“We didn’t see that in the first half. But we changed our shape and it was far better in the second half, without ever being pretty. Not that it was ever going to be that with the overhead conditions.

“In the second half I felt we were dominant and could have created one or two more chances. But fortunately we got our rewards in the final moments of the game.

“It gives us a lot of hope, that good feeling of a last-minute goal. The big thing for us is that we make this a big point. We’ve said that to the guys – we need to make sure that’s something we look back on as a valuable point.

“We’re talking about levels of consistency, from winning against Livingston to losing pretty heavily against Hibs.

“You find yourself a goal down and it’s probably easy to go under at that point. But the players acted out the message well in the second half and we knew it wasn’t going to be pretty.”

St Johnstone boss Tommy Wright bemoaned his side’s lack of concentration that cost them all three points.

He said: “We dominated the whole game. I don’t think they had one shot my keeper has to deal with in the second half.

“It was the same as every game we’ve played against them, we’ve come away with a result we didn’t deserve.

“But in saying that, we should have defended right to the end, which we didn’t do because people switched off.

“That allowed them back into the game, but with the performance in the first half we should have been out of sight.

“In the last 10 minutes we missed three unbelievable chances and that’s what happens.

“Fair play to them, but it’s another game where we totally dominated them and didn’t get the result we deserved.”