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Last Updated: Saturday, 9 December 2006, 17:06 GMT
Kilmarnock 1-1 St Mirren
Paul Di Giacomo (left) is congratulated by Frazer Wright and Allan Johnston
Paul Di Giacomo opened the scoring for Kilmarnock at Rugby Park
St Mirren and Kilmarnock shared the points at Rugby Park with second-half goals from Paul Di Giacomo and substitute Mark Corcoran.

A change of tactics in the second half saw Gus MacPherson's side hang on for an equaliser 15 minutes from time.

With few chances for either side in the first half, a draw seemed inevitable.

St Mirren's confidence was struck when Di Giacomo netted the opener for Killie on 54 minutes, but Corcoran's 75th minute reply restored the balance.

Killie showed early promise when Colin Nish latched on to a Danny Invincibile flick, with Tony Bullock saving the resulting low shot.

At the other end, Garry Brady set up John Sutton, but the striker's effort flew wide.

Simon Lappin was involved in the action on 16 minutes with an inswinging corner, but Graeme Smith managed to stifle the visitor's efforts.

Kilmarnock edged back into the game with 25 minutes gone when Nish sent home a left-footed shot from six yards, but the former Clyde man's offering drifted wide.

Moments later, Steven Naismith struck from the centre of penalty area, but Bullock managed to parry the shot and expertly smothered the re-bound.

With 13 minutes of the first half left on the clock, Naismith sent in a left-footed shot from 30 yards, but his effort drifted over the bar.

The first 45 minutes came to a close, with both sides firmly lacking in creativity, but picking up marks for solid defending.

Kilmarnock looked to have broken the deadlock shortly after the restart but Naismith was judged offside.

Bullock then appeared to handle the ball outside of his own penalty area, but the assistant referee failed to notice the infringment and no foul was given.

Di Giacomo eventually found the net when he picked up a defence-splitting pass from Allan Johnstone in the 54th minute to go one-on-one with Bullock and found the net despite grazing the keeper's fingertips.

Naismith almost added to Di Giacomo's opener a few minutes later when he struck the St Mirren crossbar with a shot from distance.

Shortly after the hour mark, Buddies manager Gus MacPherson made some tactical substututions, with Richard Brittain replacing Andy Millen and Corcoran coming on for Alex Burke.

The decision paid off when Corcoran equalised on 75 minutes for St Mirren, picking up a Brittain pass and slipping the ball under Smith to level matters.

With less than 10 minutes on the clock, Invincibile sent a volley over the bar.

And Nish could have restored the lead for Kilmarnock with a powerful free-kick from the edge of the area, but his effort struck the St Mirren wall and the opportunity was lost.

Jim Jefferies' side will undoubtedly be disappointed to have relinquished a slender lead, but the Buddies return to St Mirren Park with a hard-earned point to keep up with the pace at the bottom end of the table.


Kilmarnock: Smith, Grant Murray, Hay, Frazer Wright, Greer, Fowler, Johnston, Naismith, Invincibile, Nish, Di Giacomo.

Subs: Combe, Ford, Dodds, Stephen Murray, Leven, Adams, Campbell.

Goal: Di Giacomo, 54.

St Mirren: Bullock, van Zanten, Broadfoot, Millen, McGowne, Potter, Murray, Lappin, Brady, Sutton, Burke.

Subs: Smith, Brittain, Corcoran, Reid, Mackay, McKenna, Gemmill.

Goal: Mark Corcoran, 75.

Referee: M McCurry (Scotland)

SEE ALSO
Jefferies frustrated after draw
09 Dec 06 |  Kilmarnock
MacPherson happy to make a point
09 Dec 06 |  St Mirren


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