St Johnstone manager Tommy Wright was delighted to see Chris Kane get a reward for his hard work with a stoppage-time winner against 10-man Motherwell.
Kane flicked home Jason Kerr’s cross to earn a 2-1 win in Perth with his first Ladbrokes Premiership goal of the season.
Wright said: “I’m always on at strikers to make runs (at the) front post and I’m really pleased for Kano because he has taken a lot of stick. But he knows he’s got a manager that respects him and knows what he can do for the team.
“The three points are massive for us because it keeps us in touch with the teams above us and we are 12 above Hearts.”
Goalkeeper Zander Clark raced 100 yards to celebrate with Kane after letting Christopher Long’s strike slip under his hand as Motherwell equalised five minutes after Callum Hendry’s 27th-minute opener.
“It’s a freakish goal,” Wright said. “Zander doesn’t see it and slips a little bit. It’s one of those things but it’s a team game. Zander’s saved us on many occasions and the lads have a dug out a result for him and a result we deserved.”
Motherwell manager Stephen Robinson was frustrated after his side lost possession in the build-up to both goals, with Liam Donnelly particularly culpable.
“We had possession of the ball twice in the last minute,” Robinson said. “We try tricks and try a toe-poke instead of booting the ball into the corner, locking them in and seeing the game out and still sitting third, happy with our performance at a very difficult venue.
“It shows the naivety of us as a team and it’s something we need to learn quickly from.
“Both goals – it was a poor decision to play it out on a pitch that was as sticky as that, when we didn’t have full control of where we were setting up.”
Substitute Christy Manzinga was sent off in the 82nd minute after being booked twice in five minutes – the second for a penalty-box dive.
“That was obviously a turning point,” Robinson said. “Whether that’s the right decision or not, that’s up to the referee to decide. We can’t blame the referee because we had control of the ball and didn’t use it well enough.”