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Stranraer boss Jamie Hamill said he was proud of everyone of his players after seeing his depleted squad secure four points from two away games.

Wednesday, 1st September 2021, 3:00 pm
Stranraer celebrate Grant Gallagher's late winner at Cowdenbeath (pic: Bill McCandlish)

Hamill’s selection options were decimated by Covid and injury issues which left him able to name a squad of 14 players for Saturday’s match at Forfar.

That included putting himself on the bench, assistant manager Daryl Duffy in the starting line-up and an emergency fifth-choice keeper as a trialist.

Liverpool-born Jack Baker was drafted in after Hamill’s three existing keepers were ruled out and a fourth, brought in on an emergency loan, suffered a thigh injury in training on the Thursday night.

Despite the trials and tribulations Stranraer grabbed a creditable 1-1 draw with Duffy grabbing the goal which cancelled out Craig Slater’s opener for the hosts.

Baker, now signed, was between the sticks again for Tuesday’s trip to Cowdenbeath, a match given the circumstances the Blues boss could probably have done without. But his players rose to the occasion.

Despite falling behind to a Lee Buchanan goal five minutes after the restart, goals in the last seven minutes by Josh Rennie, a close range finish, and skipper Grant Gallagher, a rasping strike from the edge of the box, earned them a 2-1 win – their first league victory under Hamill.

"I couldn't be any prouder,” said Hamill after the match.

"Considering we've had two tough away games and we only has 12 players fit at half past five and were waiting on boys coming out of isolation at six o'clock.

“Credit to every one of the players in there, subs includedc, boys that are injured.”

Hamill agreed his side got a huge lift from Rennie’s equaliser.He said: “That's all it takes. If you keep working away things will turn.

"You're always in the game no matter what. Even if it's 1-0 to the other team you'll get a chance and luckily we took it .

"And then to win right at the death with Gal’s goal - as soon as it left his foot I knew it was a goal

“Gal's been excellent, his workrate and his endeavour to get round about the pitch and lead the boys.”

Stranraer take a break from league duty on Saturday when they host Partick Thistle in the SPFL Trust Trophy. Kick-off is 1pm.