MX23RW : Thursday, August 5 13:41:14| >> :60:3120:3120:
Feb 5, 2020 at 7.45pm UK at Tynecastle Park
Attendance: 16,211
Clare (79' pen.), Halkett (89')
FT(HT: 0-2)
Findlay (24'), Burke (38'), Brophy (50')
Branescu (80')

Daniel Stendel turns focus to victory over Kilmarnock

Daniel Stendel turns focus to victory over Kilmarnock
© Reuters
Hearts salvaged a point at St Johnstone with a 90th-minute Sean Clare equaliser.

Hearts boss Daniel Stendel was mystified by his side's second-half collapse against bogey team St Johnstone.

However, he was delighted with the backing from an army of travelling supporters who stuck by their team into stoppage time, when Sean Clare rewarded them with a spectacular equaliser.

And now, hard on the heels of taking Rangers' scalp on home turf, Stendel hopes to give the Jambos fans something else to celebrate by claiming three points against Kilmarnock on Wednesday.

"The support they (the players) got from the fans was good," he said.

"They pushed the players and that will be a strength if they can help the players in difficult situations.

"I hope we can give back to the supporters for the backing when we are back at Tynecastle."

After goals from Liam Boyce and Steven Naismith overturned Stevie May's early strike, Hearts rode their luck in a second half dominated by Tommy Wright's side, who bounced back from an energy-sapping 3-0 loss to Celtic.

Midfielder Ali McCann added to his growing reputation to make it 2-2 soon after the break and May made it 3-2 when he smashed home a 62nd-minute spot-kick, with other chances including an outrageous 45-yard May lob desperately fended off by Hearts goalkeeper Joel Pereira.

"I will need some time to understand what happened in the second half," Stendel said.

"At half-time I didn't think I would be saying I'd be happy with a point but when you see the second half I am."

St Johnstone boss Wright vented his frustration with two decisions by referee Greg Aitken before Clare's late leveller denied his side a nine-point advantage over second-bottom Hearts.

"It was a poor decision. It was our throw-in and the fourth official is right in front of it and he clearly says 'blue, blue'," he said.

"Why he isn't listening to his fourth official I don't know. You can bring VAR into Scotland all you want but it wouldn't have worked today because the ref didn't listen.

"Also, if that wasn't a foul on Jamie McCart then I don't know what is.

"They didn't deserve anything from the game because we were better, but they got a point with a great strike."

But Wright praised his players for producing one of their best displays of the season.

"After the tough game they had on Wednesday they were outstanding, it was a brilliant performance in the second half," he said.

Saints head for Aberdeen on Wednesday with injuries piling-up.

Defender Liam Gordon suffered concussion after a clash of heads with Boyce and has been ruled out of the trip to Pittodrie.

Full-back Scott Tanser was substituted at half-time with a thigh injury and midfield pair Drey Wright and Murray Davidson were already on the casualty list.

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St Johnstone manager Tommy Wright pictured in January 2016
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Tommy Wright unhappy at officials as Hearts secure last-gasp point

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United StatesUnited States29352791
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Today's Olympic highlights header

Thursday's key events

· The women's heptathlon continues with the long jump, javelin and 800m, with Katarina Johnson-Thompson now out of contention following an injury (1.10am-1.40pm)
· Andrew Pozzi pursues his dream of an Olympic medal in the men's 110m hurdles final (3.55am)
· Tom Bosworth and Callum Wilkinson are among the British hopes in the men's 20km race walk (8.30am)
· Holly Bradshaw aims to improve on fifth in Rio to challenge Greece's Katerina Stefanidi and Anzhelika Sidorova of Russia for an unlikely medal in the women's pole vault (11am)
· London 2012 champion Kirani James goes up against current world champion Steven Gardiner in the men's 400m final (1pm)

· One of the toughest Olympic events takes place in Tokyo Bay as GB's Hector Pardoe takes on the men's 20km marathon swim (10.30pm Wed)

· Galal Yafai takes on takes on Kazakhstan's Saken Bibossinov for a spot in the gold medal bout of the fly (48kg-52kg) class (6.48am)

· Lois Toulson and Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix (daughter of First Dates' Fred Sirieix) line up for the women's 10m platform (semi-final 2am; final 7am)

· Australia face Belgium in the men's final (11am)

> Today's schedule in full
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