CENTRE half Ricki Lamie has told how he’s determined to win his fitness battle as he races against the clock ahead of Saturday’s trip to Tannadice.

Lamie, 24, missed the weekend 2-1 win over Dunfermline Athletic in the Scottish Cup after succumbing to a hamstring strain in the days prior to the match.

The Ton defender is making steady progress, however, and hopes to be back in training ahead of the game at Tannadice.

But even if he does, Lamie knows he won’t be guaranteed a first team return, due to the stiff competition for places.

He told Tele Sport: “I pulled up in training at the start of last week and it’s just been precautionary.

“But the other night I had an ultrasound scan and I’m starting to build up my fitness again, so hopefully I’ll be back in training at some point today or tomorrow. And hopefully I’ll be in contention to be involved at some level on Saturday.”

Thomas O’Ware occupied one of the centre-half positions at the weekend, while Luca Gasparotto took up the other slot at East End Park.

And both players showed up well, meaning Lamie faces a fight for a place.

Lamie said: “I’ve been pleased with the way I have performed this year but nothing is ever secured and nothing is ever guaranteed.

“Healthy competition is great at any level of football and you need that. Jack Iredale came in on Saturday at left back and did really well on his second start after coming back from loan.

“He looked comfortable, so that’s great for the team. And guys like Frank Ross came in, while Scott Tiffoney’s stepped up and he’s trying to secure a starting place as well, so it’s great.

“Healthy competition is great at any level of football. You need that. Strength in depth will stand us in good stead.”

Lamie, meanwhile, hopes Ton’s fortunes in the league take an upward turn against Dundee United on Tayside this weekend.
Ton currently sit five points adrift of the promotion play-off spots.

Lamie said: “We’ll just look to try to get as many points on the board as we can, then see where we end up.

“But the sooner that starts the better, because we don’t want to have too much of a gap to bridge come the business end of the season.

“Even in the play-off game up at Tannadice [last season] we have always given a good account of ourselves but have never managed to get a good result there.

“It’s one of those where I have never come away from Tannadice thinking ‘we played really poorly there’, but at the same time we have never come away with a right good result. Hopefully that changes for us on Saturday.”