ST JOHNSTONE manager Tommy Wright has “drawn a line” under four players arriving too late to feature in Saturday’s home defeat by Kilmarnock but will discuss ways of preventing a repeat.

Wright had to remove Richard Foster and Michael O’Halloran from his original starting line-up after they were held up by a road traffic accident along with Chris Millar and Denny Johnstone.

The carload of players was on course to reach McDiarmid Park by 1pm but an accident just ahead of them, north of Dunblane, at 12.25pm led to the closure of the A9 for four hours.

As a result, the players did not arrive until well into the first half of Saints’ 2-1 Premiership defeat to the Ayrshire side.

Wright, who did not conduct post-match interviews, said: “I’ve drawn a line under it.

“They have got caught up in something that is not their own doing but, ultimately, maybe a bit more time should have been given to get here earlier, in terms of the time of year and the weather conditions.

“I am disappointed they didn’t make the game and they are disappointed they didn’t make the game because ultimately – and I will not change my opinion on it – it is their responsibility to get here on time.

“Some players get here half an hour earlier than they are meant to, some 45 minutes.

“As far as I’m concerned, there is a line drawn under it. We will try and look at ways of negating it.

“It might mean players staying overnight but that would be a cost to the club and something that would have to be talked about.

“If we change the time then we will have to look at doing a pre-match [meal] and whether we can do that at the club.

“I have been here nearly 300 games and it has never happened before. That doesn’t make it right, because it shouldn’t happen. But it did and we will look at ways to try to negate it. The only way to negate it totally is to have overnight stays.

“I don’t know if the club will do that. You can minimise ways but you can’t totally cover yourself.”

Wright, who bemoaned the loss of soft goals and a failure to work the opposition goalkeeper enough, added: “I know Joe [Shaughnessy] came out in the press and said it didn’t affect the team.

“It does, really, when you lose one of your most influential players in the top end of the pitch [O’Halloran]. So it did have an affect.”

Four Saints players had also been hit by a sickness bug which prompted their manager to cancel training last Monday in a bid to prevent the virus spreading further among the squad.

“Two had to have sickness tablets and one had to have a sickness injection,” Wright said. “So it was an eventful day. But, ultimately, we have got to do better. We know that.”