Not a classic match but a welcome three points after the disappointment of midweek. A Paul Ritchie hat trick completed a clean sweep of wins against the Saints in 2002/03. Bobby Mann missed his first match of the season and Grant Munro came in to partner Stuart McCaffrey in central defence. Charlie Christie was also missing and David Bagan took over the no 10 shirt. Both ‘keepers had good saves before Saints took an unexpected lead after 13 minutes. A cross from the left was headed into the path of Paul McHale and his 15 yard low shot bobbled past Mark Brown. Ritchie equalised in 25 minutes with a well placed header from 8 yards after a precision cross from Barry Robson on the left. The move was nearly repeated two minutes later but Ritchie flicked it past. Right on the half time whistle a Richie Hart shot took two deflections then slipped past. The match started to turn the way of the home side four minutes into the second half. Ritchie sent Robson away down the left and the expected offside flag was not given. He hit a low ball into the box and Ritchie swept it into the net from the penalty spot. The striker’s hat trick was completed in 55 minutes but the architect was Stuart Golabek who was injured in the process. Golabek ran through from midfield and passed to Ritchie at the same time as going down in pain from a crunching tackle. Ritchie ran on and stroked the ball past Kris Robertson for 3-1. Saints rarely troubled Brown after that but in 70 minutes the ‘keeper had to be quick to tip over an 18 yard shot from Mark Roberts. With 10 minutes left Saints’ substitute James McGowan was booked for a foul on Robson after being on the pitch for less than a minute. Robson sent the resultant 25 yard free kick over the bar. In a last gasp move Brown blocked a low shot from Jamie Dunbar with his legs.