Relief at victory

GARY Hamilton was a relieved man after Saturday’s much needed three points.

It was the Blues’ first league win in seven outings and left the boss in high spirits.

Hamilton praised his players after the game, apart from the dismissed Niall Henderson, who the boss said was aware of his mistake. He was particularly pleased they finally got just rewards for their recent efforts and was also happy with the full debut performance of recent signing Grant Gardiner.

He said: “It was good to get a win. I don’t think the scorelines in a lot of our recent games have reflected our performances. I think we’ve been the better team in a lot of games in terms of possession and playing football so I was delighted for the boys that they got a win eventually. I was just happy they got the result that their efforts deserved.

“A sending off is never acceptable and Niall knows what he did wasn’t right but in a strange way it probably turned the game for us.

“Up until then, we hadn’t been playing well. They weren’t much better than us but we weren’t playing the way we can. After the sending off we dug in and played very well against their 11. The effort, work-rate and endeavour that the boys put in was incredible and I think we were worthy winners in the end.

“Grant Gardiner was very good and is a great honest lad. Until he signed with us he hadn’t played since pre-season when he only featured in two games for us.

“For him to go out and perform to the levels he is performing at in the games at Ballinamallard and on Saturday is phenomenal. It’s a real credit to him and shows what a good attitude can do. It gets him through the games because he’s a winner.

“He wants to get fitter, stronger and better and is working to do that.”