JIM McAlister says he’s living every local boy's dream after captaining Morton to victory against Alloa in his 350th appearance for the club.

In reaching the milestone, McAlister moved up to fifth in Ton’s all-time post-war appearances, going shoulder-to-shoulder with the likes of Peter Weatherson, Davie Hayes and Rowan Alexander.

Instead of celebrating the landmark, the midfielder isn’t resting on his laurels as he looks to bring success on the field this season and admits that he’ll have to stay at the top of his game if he wants to keep his place in David Hopkin’s side.

He told the Tele: “I said it before the game – I was delighted to make one appearance for Morton away back in 2002 against Peterhead.

“I’ve always been one to set myself small targets and see if I could get to 250, then to 300 and now to get to 350, so it’s another one ticked off.

“The club means an awful lot to me and I’ve been here for the majority of my career through a lot of ups and a lot of downs.

“You just need to look at the size of the squad that we have, there are quality options littered through the full team with some of them having to sit in the stands.

“Hopefully on the back of that opening win we can create some more of those good times and make up for the fans not being here.

“I just need to keep working hard in training every day and to see where that takes me.

“Obviously the next milestone is to get to 400 games, but we’ll see whether that will happen or not, I hope that it does.

“I wouldn’t like to do that last 15 minutes again, but I’m really happy that I’ve been able to captain the side to a winning start in the league on top of reaching the appearance mark.”

McAlister feels it was a shame that he couldn’t share his big day with the Ton faithful as they watched on from their living rooms.

The veteran midfielder admits playing in an empty stadium is difficult to adapt to and believes it's having an impact on games across Scottish football.

He said: “It’s a shame that it was in front of an empty stadium because it’s a big milestone, but it’s something we’ve all had to adapt to.

“It is hard, I won't deny that – if you look at games even like the Old Firm the tempo of that game was so so flat compared to what it normally was, whereas if there are fans in then the game goes at a hundred miles an hour.

“It’s having the same impact on us here at Morton, especially here at Cappielow where everyone is so tight to the pitch and right on top of you.

“It is hard, but we’ve got to create our own atmosphere out on the pitch like the gaffer has said before.

“It’s that age old mentality but we’ve got boys who can do that here."