You may imagine that, simply by glancing at the scoreline, it would be possible to guess at how unremittingly drab this soulless, goalless draw was.Dear reader, you have absolutely no idea.
Two teams low on confidence – Hamilton without a win in eight league games, Thistle with one from their last 17 – shared the points but none of them were for artistic merit.
Alan Archibald’s Jags could have leapfrogged their opponents with a victory but consoled themselves that they had extended their unbeaten run to two games.
The plus factor for the hosts was that they had succeeded in avoiding losing seven successive league games for the first time since March 1999. There were few other positive notes.
Antonio Rojano, the Argentine striker making his first start for Accies, had the first attempt on goal in the tenth minute, displaying impressive chest control before swivelling to fire a shot just wide from 20 yards.
Thistle were the more composed of the two sides, however, and came desperately close to breaking the deadlock in the 18th minute.
Hamilton’s Alex Gogic was short with a pass and Ryan Edwards seized on the loose ball to fire in a shot from the edge of the 18-yard box which beat Gary Woods but smacked the base of his left-hand post.
The goalkeeper then did well to get back on his feet to keep out Paul McGinn’s strike from the rebound. Referee Steven McLean, carrying on as though the Rangers v Motherwell Betfred Cup semi-final had never happened, then incensed the home side by refusing to award a penalty when Greg Docherty crumpled to the ground following a challenge from Jordan Turnbull.
The match official’s popularity dipped further in first-half stoppage time when he adjudged that Niall Keown’s professional foul on Rojano had taken place just outside the penalty area. Cautioning the defender did not absolve Mr McLean from criticism.
Hamilton had struggled to string three passes together during that opening period and manager Martin Canning threw on former Hearts and Rangers winger David Templeton for the ineffectual Steven Boyd just four minutes after the restart.
Unfortunately, his introduction did little to improve the turgid standard of the football as the rain lashed down on the artificial surface.
Miles Storey saw a wayward cross hit the top of the bar and then blazed wildly over after getting on the end of a deep cross from Blair Spittal.
Thistle had a strong claim for a penalty in the 73rd minute when Adam Barton’s netbound drive was deliberately deflected to safety by Dougie Imrie’s elbow and Woods parried Edwards’ drive from the rebound. Imrie then appeared to good effect at the other end, rolling the ball into the path of Templeton 15 yards out only for the winger to slice his shot horribly wide.
The match then petered out, with both sides seemingly content to accept the draw and go again next time out.
It’s possible that the weather and the pitch contributed to the drabness of this encounter but, with both sides low on confidence, there may be more performances like this to come from both in the weeks and months to come.