Stuart McCall was delighted to stop the rot of consecutive SPL defeats, and begin to build the momentum ahead of the Scottish Cup final.
The Steelmen shipped nine goals in their previous two outings, but looked far more solid against the men from Ayrshire and also had several moments of incisive football going forward, particularly through the lively Steve Jones.
And McCall has now set his sights on taking those positive traits into the weekend – and the Hampden showpiece beyond.
“I would have loved to have won the last home game of the season,” the gaffer conceded. “But I thought we dealt well with a Kilmarnock team, who we have seen can play a bit this season.
“I was pleased with our application and the way we played the game, although it would have been nice to win, especially after we scored and then Jenno [Jennings] has a goal disallowed. But it was a well-deserved point.
“We have now got eleven days – obviously with the SPL match against Celtic in there – between us and the Cup final; the biggest game in many of the player’s and staff’s careers, really. We’ll approach Sunday in the correct manner, then we’ve got the big one.
“It’s just a fantastic way to end the season. For these lads to have started playing in Europe back in July, considering the lack of numbers, is terrific and they deserve every credit.”
McCall was particularly effusive in his praise for his defence, which had been through a tortuous couple of matches recently.
Yet against a lively Kilmarnock attack – Eremenko scheming, Dayton buzzing down the flank and Bryson bursting from midfield – ‘Well defended well and constricted Killie to only a couple of truly clear-cut chances in the 90 minutes.
The gaffer continued: “We tracked runners and were defensively much stronger. There were certain spells that Kilmarnock looked dangerous, but I thought when we were on top we had opportunities that just wouldn’t fall for us.
“I thought Kilmarnock played well, though; in fact I thought it was a decent game.”
The Motherwell boss, after the match, also sought to put Motherwell fans’ collective minds at ease regarding Jamie Murphy’s absence from the match squad.
The ‘Well star, so often a stand-out during the Steelmen’s mammoth 51-game season so far, was left out against Killie altogether – but the Scottish Cup quarter-final and semi-final Player of the Round will be back in the team when 21st May rolls round.
“He’s one of those players who has played a lot of football this season,” McCall conceded. “And I thought I should freshen things up a little bit.”