Saturday 14th February 2009
Rugby Park, Kilmarnock
Kilmarnock 1 - Hamill (76)
Hibs 1 - Riordan (45)
This was a pretty entertaining 1-1 draw however, Hibs will feel a bit disappointed they didn't take the three points after taking the lead right on half time - and as far as I could see they had Mixu Paatelainen to blame.
This scrappy game was lit up by a moment of genius right on half-time. Derek Riordan flicked the ball over a Killie player's head and unleashed a stunning volley from 30 yards. The ball took a big deflection off of Manuel Pascali and flew past Alan Combe in the Killie goal.
By the time Killie equalised in the 76th minute it was obvious to anyone that Hibs needed to make changes. They had a proven goalscorer of international standing on the bench in Steven Fletcher but Paatelainen refused to make changes and was punished for his hesitancy. Hibs' Scotland under-21 internationalist left-back Paul Hanlon - who I didn't think much of - too long to clear and was dispossessed by Hamill who took a few steps before curling a beautiful left footed shot into Grzegorz Szamotulski's top right hand corner.
Rob Jones was a stand out in this one. The big defender was colossal and it was no coincidence that Killie came back into the match after he was subbed at half-time due to injury. Oppositely I wasn't very impressed with Hibs youngsters Hanlon and Darren McCormack while Killie's Connor Sammon was absolutely woeful and missed a few glorious opportunities - much to the consternation of the Killie fans around me.
Kilmarnock: 1. Combe, 15. Murray, 3. Hay, 4. Lilley, 6. Ford, 7. Bryson, 17. Gibson, 19. Skelton, 29. Pascali, 23. Hamill, 28. Sammon
Subs Not Used: 27. Rascle, 8. Locke, 12.Johnston, 22. Clancy, 25. Flannigan, 31. Anson, 33. Nolan.
Hibernian: 13. Szamotulski, 25.McCormack, 4. Hogg, 5. Jones (23. Chisholm - 46 mins), 20. Hanlon, 16. Stevenson, 26. Bamba, 32. Rosa, 18.Rankin, 10. Nish, 01. Riordan
Subs Not Used: 21. McNeil, 8. Yantorno, 9. Fletcher, 11. O'Brien, 14. Keenan, 31. Johansson .
My man of the match: Rob Jones (Hibs)