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Hamilton retain SPL status despite heavy defeat

Hamilton retained their place in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League despite a 3-0 home derby defeat by Motherwell. Hamilton boss Billy Reid hailed the achievement of his history-making team who became the first Accies team ever to secure a second consecutive season of top-flight football.

He said: "I know how much it means to everybody at the club and the work that's gone into it.

"We're a small club with a small budget but everybody works so hard, all pulling the right way, and that's what's made this possible.

"Over the season, I think we've deserved to stay in the league and we've brought something to it.

"We've come in as a young squad with no SPL experience, a manager with no SPL experience, and we've had our highs and lows but the boys have given everything.

"We're trying to get the disappointment of this result out of the way, but if we'd won 3-0 it wouldn't really matter because the objective was to remain in the league and be the first Accies side in history to do that.

"I heard during the game that St Mirren were winning 2-0 and that Kilmarnock had scored, but I was the manager here when St Johnstone thought they had won the championship (the 2007 First Division title secured for Gretna by a last-gasp goal) so until you hear the final whistle in the other game, you're never sure.

"We're just glad that we're not in that dogfight in the last game of the season; some of the players out there who have carried us all through the season have been running on empty for a while.

"However, we're trying to finish as high as we can and three points at St Mirren would go a long way to that; and then we need to add to the squad and make us stronger, and we should be better prepared next season."

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