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Partick Thistle FC
Partick Thistle FC

Hibernian 2 Partick Thistle 3

This was the final game of quite a turbulent season. In those days of the SPL only the bottom side went down and we finished in 10th position. To our huge relief, we left the positions below us to Dundee United and Motherwell. We had, however, been granted merely a stay of execution, and the axe duly fell at the end of the following season. After a season in the second tier, we even decided to have a bash at the third tier – gloomy times indeed. Fortunately, we managed to escape from there thanks to that dramatic penalty shoot-out at Peterhead. Did somebody mention tension?

Reverting to the featured match, with safety having been secured, John Lambie handed the reins to Gerry Collins and he managed to engineer a good result. With Danny Lennon not in the starting line-up and Derek Whyte on the substitutes bench, Kenny Arthur was captain for the day and, having won the toss, Thistle would shoot left to right looking from the main stand, that is up the Easter Road slope in order to have the advantage in the second-half. This was the tactic usually employed by visiting captains at grounds with a recognised slope, and on this occasion it worked an absolute treat – half time 2-1 down, full time 3-2 up. There you are, it’s easy!

It didn’t look so good, however, in the 8th minute when Mathias Jack have Hibs the lead. Over the years we had come to rely upon Gerry Britton to come up with something and he duly fired the equaliser after 29 minutes. Unfortunately, 8 minutes later Hibs re-gained the lead and you’ll never guess who scored – Scott Brown. If that’s the man in question on the front cover of the programme he hadn’t embarked on his current image back in 2003.

The second-half was great. David Rowson equalised in 52 minutes and with just 5 minutes to go up popped Alex Burns with a deserved winner.

After the match John Lambie received a presentation from Eddie Turnbull, former Hibernian player and manager, to mark the retirement of one of Scottish football’s most popular figures, as he is described in the programme. John had, of course, a Hibs connection, having been a coach at Easter Road in the 1970’s, when Eddie Turnbull was his boss.

Fashion note: – In the featured match Thistle wore white jerseys and matching shorts, while Hibs turned out in yellow jerseys and green shorts. What was that all about?

Robert R(traditionalist)

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