'Well Win a Point At Tynecastle

Last updated : 27 December 2003 By Firparkcorner

Hearts made the better start but our defence, which was the same as last week, always looked solid. It is a testament to our hard work that we restricted Hearts to just one shot on target in the first half. Andy Kirk was allowed to wriggle away from a clutch of defenders but his left foot drive was well turned away by Marshall.

Farewell Pearo?
As the half progressed we came back into things and began to enjoy our fair share of possession. Sadly our final ball was somewhat lacking. Our only half chance came from a free kick thirty yards out. Hammell and Adams pondered what to do with it before Del Boy ended the debate by thumping the ball into the stand.

The only change to the starting line up was the inclusion of Jason Dair in place of the off form Pearo. He had little chance to impress going forward but he handled his defensive responsibilities well. Mark de Vries did not make the starting eleven for the hosts but the equally large Kevin McKenna was kept in Craigan’s pocket until his eventually substitution.

We enjoyed a good spell of pressure at the start of the second half but again the final ball was lacking. Alex Burns was having a very ineffectual game – he looked more than a yard off the pace – but almost latched onto a neat ball from Clarkson. He was taken off to allow Pearson on and Jason Dair moved up front. Pearo played a much better game and he had a number of good runs into the box – unfortunately both Lasley and Clarkson managed to miss him with crosses. Burns played a part in setting up our best chance when he nodded onto Clarkson who might have turned and shot but instead lobbed over to Lasley. From an area not dissimilar to where he scored from last season, he could only blast wildly over the bar.

With twenty minutes to go Hearts stepped up a gear and the introduction of de Vries caused us some problems. However, the defence was able to hold tight and Hearts struggled to create openings. de Vries was denied by a last ditch tackle after a slight wobble in the defence and Valois dragged a shot wide. Gordon Marshall had to collect a few balls but he had no saves of note to make in the second 45 minutes.

So, we have ended our run of defeats but we will need to wait at least another week to find a goal. Steven Craigan turned in an excellent man of the match performance but young Paul Quinn coped very well with everything that was thrown at him. However, as Terry said, ‘we are delighted to come to a place like Tynecastle and get a point.’

As a side note, this was our first 0-0 draw since we played Livingston early in the 2001/02 season – 98 games ago!