Garry Warren's first-half header gave Inverness Caledonian Thistle a narrow Scottish Premiership win over St Johnstone.

The defender rose highest to nod Richie Foran's pass into the net.

The goal was a deserved one for the visitors after a first half in which they created the better chances.

Saints' Nigel Hasselbaink headed a gilt-edged chance off target after David Wotherspoon's shot had been blocked in the second period.

The win for Inverness stretches the gap between the two sides to nine points with John Hughes' side now level on points with fourth-place Dundee United.

And Hibernian, who drew with Kilmarnock, move level on points with St Johnstone, meaning Tommy Wright's men have preserved their top-six place by virtue of a superior goal difference.

Frazer Wright's injury, which required the defender to be stretchered off, compounded a disappointing day for the hosts.

Indeed, Saints almost fell behind early on when Warren headed a Josh Meekings cross wide.

Inverness continued to press and Billy McKay's shot was beaten away by Alan Mannus before Greg Tansey drove wide.

Mannus then saved bravely at the feet of McKay but the visitors soon made the breakthrough.

David Raven swung in a high cross that Foran nodded down and back up into the air for Warren to power home.

Stevie May tried to force a St Johnstone equaliser early in the second half but his shot was blocked by Warren.

Hasselbaink, who tested Dean Brill twice in the first half, should have levelled when presented with a chance on the rebound following Wotherspoon's but could not direct his header into the net.

And the match ended on a sour note for the hosts when Wright sustained suspected ligament damage and was taken from the field on a stretcher.

Lineup, Bookings (5) & Substitutions (5)

St Johnstone

  • 01 Mannus
  • 02 Mackay
  • 24 Easton
  • 07 Millar Booked (Croft - 71' )
  • 06 Anderson
  • 05 Wright (Scobbie - 37' )
  • 10 Wotherspoon Booked
  • 04 Cregg (Iwelumo - 45' )
  • 17 May
  • 11 Hasselbaink Booked
  • 08 McDonald

Substitutes

  • 03 Scobbie
  • 12 Dunne
  • 15 Banks
  • 19 Miller
  • 22 Croft
  • 25 Iwelumo
  • 29 O'Halloran

Inverness Caledonian Thistle

  • 12 Brill
  • 02 Raven
  • 03 Shinnie
  • 08 Draper Booked
  • 05 Warren
  • 06 Meekings
  • 10 Doran
  • 16 Tansey
  • 07 McKay (Vincent - 78' )
  • 09 Foran
  • 15 Watkins Booked (Ross - 74' )

Substitutes

  • 01 Esson
  • 04 Vincent
  • 11 Ross
  • 14 Devine
  • 18 Tremarco
  • 20 Polworth
  • 21 Pepper
Ref: Euan Norris
Att: 2,415

Match Stats

Shots

10 8

On target

6 3

Corners

2 1

Fouls

18 14

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, St Johnstone 0, Inverness CT 1.

90:00 +3:05 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, St Johnstone 0, Inverness CT 1.

90:00 +2:27

Foul by Steve May (St Johnstone).

90:00 +2:27

Gary Warren (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

90:00 +1:20

Lee Croft (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +1:20

Foul by Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT).

89:35

Attempt missed. Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) right footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.

89:13

Chris Iwelumo (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

89:13

Foul by Greg Tansey (Inverness CT).

88:56

Attempt missed. Richie Foran (Inverness CT) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is close, but misses to the left.

88:06

Foul by Thomas Scobbie (St Johnstone).

88:06

Richie Foran (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

87:00

Lee Croft (St Johnstone) wins a free kick on the right wing.

86:56

Foul by Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT).

84:02

Foul by Chris Iwelumo (St Johnstone).

84:02

Gary Warren (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

80:06

Chris Iwelumo (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

80:06

Foul by Gary Warren (Inverness CT).

79:44

Attempt missed. Aaron Doran (Inverness CT) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

77:30 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Inverness CT. James Vincent replaces Billy McKay.

75:33

Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

75:33

Foul by Greg Tansey (Inverness CT).

73:52 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Inverness CT. Nick Ross replaces Marley Watkins.

71:47

Brian Easton (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

71:47

Foul by Richie Foran (Inverness CT).

71:19

Foul by Lee Croft (St Johnstone).

71:19

Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

70:24 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, St Johnstone. Lee Croft replaces Chris Millar.

66:58 Booking

Booking Ross Draper (Inverness CT) is shown the yellow card.

66:37

Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) wins a free kick on the left wing.

66:37

Foul by Ross Draper (Inverness CT).

65:22

Corner, St Johnstone. Conceded by Graeme Shinnie.

63:55

Foul by Gary McDonald (St Johnstone).

63:55

Marley Watkins (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

61:43

Foul by Steve May (St Johnstone).

61:43

Josh Meekings (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

60:07

Attempt saved. Steve May (St Johnstone) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

58:08

Foul by Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone).

58:08

Gary Warren (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

57:37

Attempt missed. Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) header from the left side of the six yard box is too high.

57:23

Attempt saved. David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

55:52

Attempt missed. Steve May (St Johnstone) right footed shot from the left side of the box is too high.

54:24

Foul by Brian Easton (St Johnstone).

54:24

Marley Watkins (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

45:00

Second Half begins St Johnstone 0, Inverness CT 1.

45:00 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, St Johnstone. Chris Iwelumo replaces Patrick Cregg.

45:00 +1:55 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, St Johnstone 0, Inverness CT 1.

45:00 +0:45

Foul by David Raven (Inverness CT).

45:00 +0:45

Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

45:00 +0:12

Attempt saved. David Mackay (St Johnstone) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

44:26

Foul by Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT).

44:26

David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

43:50

Foul by Marley Watkins (Inverness CT).

43:50

Gary McDonald (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

41:24 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! St Johnstone 0, Inverness CT 1. Gary Warren (Inverness CT) header from the centre of the box to the top right corner. Assisted by Richie Foran.

40:14

Foul by David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone).

40:14

Aaron Doran (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

39:07

Attempt saved. Billy McKay (Inverness CT) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

38:25

Attempt blocked. David Raven (Inverness CT) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

36:48

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

36:47

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

36:39 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, St Johnstone. Thomas Scobbie replaces Frazer Wright because of an injury.

34:30

Delay in match Frazer Wright (St Johnstone) because of an injury.

34:00

Marley Watkins (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

33:57

Foul by David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone).

33:03 Booking

Booking Marley Watkins (Inverness CT) is shown the yellow card.

32:38 Booking

Booking David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone) is shown the yellow card.

31:07 Booking

Booking Chris Millar (St Johnstone) is shown the yellow card.

30:46

Foul by Chris Millar (St Johnstone).

30:46

Marley Watkins (Inverness CT) wins a free kick on the left wing.

30:01 Booking

Booking Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) is shown the yellow card.

30:00

Gary Warren (Inverness CT) wins a free kick on the left wing.

29:39

Foul by Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone).

28:06

Foul by Chris Millar (St Johnstone).

28:06

Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

26:26

Patrick Cregg (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

26:26

Foul by Greg Tansey (Inverness CT).

23:20

Foul by Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone).

23:20

David Raven (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

22:26

Steve May (St Johnstone) wins a free kick on the left wing.

22:26

Foul by Gary Warren (Inverness CT).

22:00

Attempt saved. Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

21:26

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

21:25

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

20:53

Delay in match Steve May (St Johnstone) because of an injury.

19:49

Foul by Billy McKay (Inverness CT).

19:49

Frazer Wright (St Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

16:59

Attempt missed. David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone) header from the centre of the box misses to the left.

16:19

Corner, St Johnstone. Conceded by Dean Brill.

16:07

Attempt saved. Nigel Hasselbaink (St Johnstone) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

12:04

Ross Draper (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

12:04

Foul by Patrick Cregg (St Johnstone).

11:21

Greg Tansey (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

11:21

Foul by Patrick Cregg (St Johnstone).

9:18

Attempt saved. Steve May (St Johnstone) header from the left side of the six yard box is saved in the centre of the goal.

6:30

Attempt missed. Ross Draper (Inverness CT) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

6:14

Attempt saved. Billy McKay (Inverness CT) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

4:56

Corner, Inverness CT. Conceded by Brian Easton.

4:15

Foul by Gary McDonald (St Johnstone).

4:15

Graeme Shinnie (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

2:51

Foul by Ross Draper (Inverness CT).

2:51

David Wotherspoon (St Johnstone) wins a free kick on the right wing.

1:47

Attempt missed. Gary Warren (Inverness CT) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

0:53

Aaron Doran (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

0:53

Foul by Chris Millar (St Johnstone).

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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