Hamilton Accies ace Ahkeem Rose playing through pain barrier but was gutted to be reduced to supersub role in Alloa clash

Ahkeem Rose -Credit:Paul Byars
Ahkeem Rose -Credit:Paul Byars

Hamilton Accies hero Ahkeem Rose admits he has been playing through a pelvic injury but told his gaffer he wasn't happy about starting on the bench for their play-off semi-final win over 10-man Alloa.

The Jamaican striker was subbed on in the 70th minute and netted the winner seven minutes later in Saturday's 3-2 triumph, which saw Accies progress to 5-4 on aggregate to set up a final showdown with Inverness Caley Thistle over Wednesday and Saturday.

Boss John Rankin didn't think the Ayr United loanee was fit enough to play the full game, but Rose was delighted to get on the scoresheet after missing Tuesday's first leg tie at the Indodrill.

He said: "I have been carrying an injury for three weeks now. My pelvis has been really bad so the gaffer has been trying to manage me a bit. I was disappointed I didn't start - and I told him that as well - but he knows what he is doing and I am grateful to him.

"Even when I wanted to play in other weeks, he said we need to look ahead to the other games. It is great to score but the most important thing is getting to the final. The boys are buzzing and we've got two more games to go to get us up.

"We showed a lot of character over the two legs. The boys have been outstanding. It is always hard to play against 10 men because you know they will sit back. I'm just glad to get the goal."

Accies fell behind early on to a Quinn Coulson strike, only for Reghan Tumilty and Lewis Smith to pull them level by half-time. Alloa gave themselves a mountain to climb when Morgyn Neill picked up a double booking for dissent in the aftermath of Smith's goal, sarcastically clapping referee Steven Kirkland after his initial indiscretion, and substitute Conor Sammon gave the visitors a lifeline when he pulled them level after 57 minutes.

However, Rose had the final say when he poked home after superb work by Smith to tee him up, and he added: "Smithy has been outstanding. He took his goal well and it was a great assist for me. It has been great playing with him. I know the type of winger he is so it worked well."

With just two games standing between Accies and an immediate return to the Championship, Rose hopes to take them up to the same division as parent club Ayr.

The 25-year-old still has a year left on his contract at Somerset Park when his loan expires this month, so he will want to impress Honest Men boss Scott Brown by sinking the Caley Jags and ensuring Accies are also a Championship side next term.

He said: "I have got another year at Ayr so after this season I will go back there in the summer and see what happens. The plan is to take Accies into the same division. When I first came here that was the goal for me and we are two games away from that now, so hopefully we can get the job done.

"I'm not doing too bad. I'm up to eight goals here and 13 in total so it is a good goal return. But we've got two more games to go. I have played Inverness a couple of times at Ayr. They are a really good team so we will show them respect and go again next week."

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