Hearts put their capital rivals to the sword this afternoon, defeating Hibs 2-1 in the Reserve Cup.
Andy Kirk’s side took a first-half lead through Danny Amankwaa before Fraser Murray equalised minutes before the break. Craig Wighton bagged the winning goal in a match that saw both sides reduced to ten men.
Recent arrival Clevid Dikamona was given his first outing in a maroon shirt, with Arnaud Djoum afforded more game-time following his return from injury.
Hearts went in the offensive from the start. Anthony McDonald slipped Wighton through but his shot hit the side net.
McDonald and Cammy Logan then combined down the right with the former curling an effort from the edge of the box but it was straight at Dabrowski in the Hibs goal.
The deadlock was broken after 16 minutes. Wighton turned his man inside the box to middle for Djoum, who teed up Amankwaa and the Dane placed a low shot through a crowd of Hibs bodies and into the bottom corner of the net.
The afternoon became a difficult one three minutes later when Hearts were reduced to ten men. Chris Hamilton’s forceful challenge saw him swipe the legs of Fraser Murray, and the skipper was shown a straight red.
Harry Cochrane had a penalty shout turned down on the half hour mark when he was flattened inside the Hibs box but the referee waved play on. The home side then went straight up the park and were denied a certain goalscoring opportunity by a superb last-ditch tackle from Danny Baur.
Sean Mackie went close to pulling one back with a 30-yard thunderbolt drive that flew just past Kevin Silva’s left-hand post, before Wighton’s outside-of-the-boot effort went straight at Dabrowski.
With two minutes of the half remaining, Hibs got back on level terms. A cross from the left found the unmarked Fraser Murray, who bulleted a header beyond Silva and into the back of the net, though the Hearts ‘keeper was unlucky not to stop it having got a lot on the ball.
Lewis Allan passed up a good chance to give Hibs the lead 17 minutes into the restart, cutting in from the left but firing into the side net.
Hearts went straight up the park and regained the lead. Wighton managed to wrestle possession of the ball inside the Hibs box and ghosted past two green shirts before slamming high into the top corner.
Two minutes the hosts had a man of their own sent off. Josh Campbell’s late lunge on Cochrane earned him his second yellow and a red card.
Both sides then created half chances; McDonald and Wighton failed to find the target while Jamie Gullan hit the side net. Substitute Lewis Moore’s long-range drive flew over the bar by inches before he played a one-two with Wighton, only to see Dabrowski beat his effort away.
More names went into the book as Hearts retained possession well and saw out the game, picking up all three points in their opening group stage game.