Strange then that, according to the two managers, four of football's most precious commodity had just slipped away on Saturday. Both men made a compelling case for deserving the win in a dull encounter that only burst into life during a frantic final 15 minutes.
The best player on the park was Dougie Imrie. The preening Morton playmaker strutted about the pitch, sweeping in every angled dead ball before gazing after it in satisfaction like a sharp-dressed golfer staring as his dreamy drive flies off the first tee. His penalty was sweetly struck, too, fired high into the top corner, past the despairing dive of David McGurn.
It came after Liam Fox was judged to have handled the ball in the box, and Imrie's celebration was as risky as his penalty-taking; he surely only to meant to lightly touch heads with his manager, rather than bestow upon him what might be called a Greenock Kiss. "He had a wee word with us during the week," revealed Imrie. "I just thought I'd repay him by sticking it in the top corner. The gaffer's a good lad and I just want to do well for him this year."
"We've asked a lot of Dougie," said gaffer, Allan Moore, explained. "He's been off the boil a bit and we've asked him to lift his game. He's taken the penalty well and we need those experienced boys to get together with the young boys."
His side would not to get the win their manager felt they merited, though; Lewis Vaughan's terrific driven cross allowed Grant Anderson to snatch a late headed equalizer. The spindly winger had been a willing and industrious outlet throughout for the visitors. Fox was a snarling presence, directing his colleagues with such vigour that his voice was shot by within 10 minutes of kick off.
Raith's equaliser had come out of nowhere. Morton were comfortable and hope was slipping away from the visitors. Suddenly, though, the game burst into life as both sides dashed up the park, abandoning all sense of defensive responsibility. The hosts could count themselves fortunate to stay level; Calum Elliot's low shot was brilliant saved by the diving Nicolas Cauraux.
At the other end, Imrie was always a threat but could not quite conjure up a winner. After a slow start, the former St Mirren forward is getting used to life back in the second tier. "It's the same old first division," he said. "I've always said it's worse than the Premiership, 100 miles an hour; you don't get any time on the ball. It's harder, always frantic."