Hibs 2-1 Heart of Midlothian
Hearts were beaten 2-1 by Hibs at Easter Road in the New Year's derby.
David Smith had cancelled out James Collins' opener, but Liam Craig converted a late penalty to give the home side all three points.
The Jambos were forced into one change from the side that drew 1-1 at St Mirren four days ago, as Danny Wilson missed out through illness. Jordan McGhee slotted in at right back as Dylan McGowan shifted over to replace the missing skipper.
The match started in the same manner as the previous encounter between the two sides. Hibs piled forward and put pressure on the Hearts defence, but the men in maroon stood firm with a series of blocks and last-ditch tackles.
The first real chance of the match fell to the Jambos in the 12th minute. Callum Paterson skinned his man on the left to put in an early cross and although Callum Tapping got a touch to send the ball goalwards from the edge of the six yard box, Ben Williams got enough with his right hand to steer the ball away from goal.
Hibs almost went one better six minutes later. A long diagonal ball found Jordon Forest at the back post, but his header bounced off the top of the crossbar and Hearts cleared their lines.
Jason Cummings, once of Hearts, nearly broke the deadlock just after the half hour mark when he burst through the Jambos' defence and into the box, but he wildly shot wide of the target from eight yards.
Cummings again went close only two minutes later. Hibs capitalised on a wayward Hearts pass in the middle of the park and moved their way up to the edge of the box. A chipped ball in was eventually headed on target by the Hibs frontman but Jamie MacDonald was on hand to tip the ball round the post.
The second half continued at the same frantic pace that was prevalent throughout the first. A low cross into the Hearts box in the 51st minute was met at the front post by the diving James Collins, but his header flashed wide of the target.
Bang on the hour mark, the breakthrough was made. A Hibs corner ricocheted around the Hearts box before falling to Collins, who swivelled and shot first time high into the roof of the net as the home side took the lead.
Hearts immediately set about trying to claw a goal back. A 64th minute Kevin McHattie corner was met by Brad McKay, but his bullet header flew past Williams' left-hand post.
The home side's lead lasted all of ten minutes as super-sub David Smith got Hearts back on level terms. He went on a 25 yard mazy run, cutting inside and shooting from the edge of the box, and although his effort was saved by Williams, the Hearts winger outpaced his man to reach the follow-up first and stab the ball home.
Despite playing with confidence, Hearts suffered a cruel late blow when Jordan McGhee fouled Lewis Stevenson in the box as he attempted to sheppard the ball out for a goal kick. Liam Craig duly stepped up and slotted the ball past MacDonald.
The men in maroon battled until the bitter end, with Kevin McHattie beating three players and unleashing a thunderbolt shot inside the box, but Williams did well to push the ball wide at his near post.
In the end it was the home side who ran out victors, with Hearts feeling aggrieved at not leaving Easter Road with a point.
Hibs: Williams, McGivern, Hanlon, Nelson, Robertson (Tudor-Jones, 72'), Craig, Cairney (Stanton, 88'), Collins, L. Stevenson, Forster, Cummings (Heffernan, 60'). Subs: Murdoch, Maybury, Handling, Zoubir.
Hearts: MacDonald; McGhee, McKay, McGowan, McHattie; Tapping (Smith, 65'), Hamill, Robinson, Walker; Paterson, Stevenson. Subs: Hamilton, A. King, Carrick, B. King, Nicholson.
Referee: Bobby Madden
Top man: Brad McKay