MARK Russell says he was delighted with his goal-saving clearances against St Mirren which helped his side secure a point in the Renfrewshire derby.

Russell found himself in the right place at the right time on two occasions to expertly thwart Saints striker Gavin Reilly in the closing stages of the game. 

The blocks were pivotal to Ton holding on to a point, despite the Greenock men dominating for most of the second half.

And the defender has revealed his heroics are down to thorough positioning training — and claims he didn’t realise at the time just how vital the challenges would turn out to be.

He told the Tele: “We do a lot in training about dealing with opposition wave of attack.

“If the team is under the cosh a wee bit we have to try and keep our position and hold out if it’s 1-0 or 0-0 at the time.

“Keeping the scoreline at that always gives you an opportunity to at least take a point or maybe even all three. 
“It was the same against St Mirren where we managed to keep it to 1-0 at half-time and quite tight.

“Did I realise at the time how important the blocks I made to stop Gavin Reilly were? Not really. 

“I just thought to get the ball away and thankfully that’s what I managed to do. Although I was quite pleased with it.

“The second chance especially was right on the line and I was lucky enough to be in the right position to clear it. 

“We do a lot of shape work trying to hold positions and that seems to be working, as we can see.”

Twenty-one-year-old Russell says the Sinclair Street outfit are ready for a return to Glebe Park to face Brechin City after a tough trip the last time. 

Morton eventually won the game 1-0 but it took a goal from Andy Murdoch in the last 10 minutes to nick it and although Ton thrashed the Angus club 4-1 at Cappielow at the beginning of December, the left-back isn’t expecting an easy ride tomorrow afternoon.

He added: “We’re expecting a right hard game just through the way Brechin try and sit back and catch teams on the counter and frustrate them. 

“But hopefully we can dig deep and get the three points.

“There’s no psychological edge after the last time we played them, it’s just another game. 

“We’ll just go into this one as we always do, which is to go and try to play well enough to grab the three points.”