Hibs mid­fielder Shin­nie sali­vat­ing at the prospect of his maiden Ed­in­burgh derby

The Herald - Herald Sport - - LADBROKES CHAMPIONSHIP - ALAN TEM­PLE CRAIG STEWART

AN­DREW SHIN­NIE was a neu­tral when Hibs last vis­ited Tynecas­tle – yet he still got goose­bumps watch­ing Paul Han­lon’s dra­matic equaliser.

Now the 27-year-old can­not wait to ex­pe­ri­ence the blood and thun­der of the Ed­in­burgh derby for real.

The Scot­tish Cup fifth round has thrown up a re­peat of the clash from last sea­son, when the Hibees roared back from a 2-0 deficit at half-time to res­cue a draw, spark­ing bed­lam among a packed away sec­tion in Gorgie.

Cup-win­ner Fraser Fyvie re­cently cited that fix­ture as the mo­ment the Hibees be­gan to be­lieve they would end their 114-year hoodoo and lift the tro­phy. In­deed, they went on to de­feat the Jam­bos in the re­play be­fore see­ing off In­ver­ness, Dundee United and Rangers to claim glory.

Shin­nie who was on loan at Rother­ham from Birm­ing­ham City at the time, re­calls the drama of the clash and how he fan­cied be­ing a part of it.

Shin­nie re­called: “I have seen the Hibs fans in the der­bies on TV and they are bril­liant but you prob­a­bly need to play in it to fully ap­pre­ci­ate it.

“I saw the goals from the derby last sea­son, I re­mem­ber Paul (Han­lon) wheel­ing away when he scored late on and the fans go­ing crazy. It makes you want to play in it.

“That’s what I was think­ing when I came here. I wanted to ex­pe­ri­ence a Hibs-Hearts derby, so when the draw came out I was de­lighted.

“The other night was a bit touch and go – and if we had got Raith Rovers we’d have gone there – but I’m just de­lighted that I’ll hope­fully get to take part in an Ed­in­burgh derby at Tynecas­tle. It doesn’t get bet­ter than that.”

Mean­while, Queen of the South fi­nally wel­come in 2017 at their Palmer­ston Park home when Hibs visit this af­ter­noon and Doon­hamers man­ager Gary Nay­smith is hop­ing that the home fans do not recog­nise his team.

Nay­smith ex­plained: “This is our first game of the New Year at home which is a bit un­usual but we are look­ing for­ward to be­ing in front of our own fans again.

“The last time we were there we played out a goal­less draw with Ayr that took our win­less run to 13 games.”

“Things have changed a bit since then and we are go­ing into the game with con­fi­dence after pick­ing up seven points from three away games.”

The for­mer East Fife boss added: “It could have ac­tu­ally been bet­ter than that as we should have won at Dundee United.

“We have scored eight goals in those three games and looked a much sharper side.

“The play­ers we brought in this month as well as the ex­ist­ing squad de­serve great credit for get­ting my time here up and run­ning and im­prov­ing our league po­si­tion.”

“We now have the sec­ond best away record in the league, how­ever hav­ing that record and sit­ting fifth in the ta­ble shows that there is work to be done at home. That starts against Hibs.”

READY FOR AC­TION: An­drew Shin­nie will bid to help Hibs beat Queen of the South to­day

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