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Friday, 15 February, 2002, 17:38 GMT
Killie and Hearts share six goals
Hearts celebrate Tommi Gronlund's equaliser
Tommi Gronlund is the toast of Hearts
Kilmarnock 3-3 Heart of Midlothian

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Hearts produced a stunning, late fightback to keep wide open the race for the top six places before the Scottish Premier League split.

The visitors took the lead with a stunning Stephane Mahe drive.

Killie hit back after the break through Craig Dargo, Tommy Johnson and Stephen Murray.

But Hearts captain Steve Pressley gave his side some hope late on from the penalty spot and Tommi Gronlund equalised four minutes from the end.

Fifth-top Killie were one place and two points ahead of Hearts at the start of the day.

Stephane Mahe celebrates his opening goal
Stephane Mahe celebrates his opening goal
Home boss Bobby Williamson made two changes, with winger Murray and Alan Mahood returning for Kris Boyd and Jesus Sanjuan.

Hearts were without on-loan striker Ricardo Fuller and influential midfielder Steve Fulton, while Gronlund dropped to the bench.

Alan Maybury, Stephane Adam and Andrew Webster took their places.

Hearts started brightly and Scott Severin flashed a left-foot volley just past the post after just 40 seconds.

The home sidecarved out a good chance of their own in the fifth minute.

Kilmarnock goalkeeper Gordon Marshall needed to be alert to save from his own player as Peter Canero connected with Adam's centre.

The game was flowing from end to end and Garry Hay's free-kick broke to Mahood in the box and the midfielder's effort took a deflection to spin just wide of the post.

Canero blazed his shot over after 22 minutes as Killie again went close to breaking the deadlock.

Mahe fired Hearts in front after 40 minutes with wonderful piece of control and finishing.

The French full-back cut inside Fowler before unleashing a stunning right-foot shot past Marshall.

Stephen Murray celebrates his goal
Stephen Murray scored Killie's third goal
Killie came close to equalising when Hay's intended cross stunned Antti Niemi by shaving the crossbar.

Whatever Williamson said in the dressing-room at the interval certainly worked as Kilmarnock drew level when Ally Mitchell's cross was directed into the net by Dargo.

They made it two after 52 minutes, when Johnson finished clinically with a powerful left-foot strike.

Killie doubled their advantage after 66 minutes, when Murray played a neat one-two from the corner with Dargo to give himself the angle and curled a wonderful left-foot shot past Niemi and into the top corner of the net.

Marshall was adjudged to have fouled young substitute Graham Weir in the box and Pressley dispatched the kick emphatically home after 70 minutes.

The visitors stunned the home crowd with just five minutes remaining when Gronlund's shot took a wicked deflection and looped over Marshall and into the net.


Kilmarnock: Marshall, Canero, Hessey, McGowne, Hay, Fowler, Mahood, Mitchell, Murray (McLaren 84), Dargo, Johnson (Boyd 71). Subs Not Used: Meldrum, Innes, McDonald.

Booked: Marshall.

Goals: Dargo 46, Johnson 52, Murray 66.

Hearts: Niemi, Maybury, Pressley, McKenna, Mahe, Flogel, Simmons, Severin, Webster (Gronlund 65), Adam (McMullan 64), Wales (Weir 71). Subs Not Used: McKenzie, Boyack.

Booked: Mahe, Webster.

Goals: Mahe 40, Pressley 83 pen, Gronlund 86.

Attendance: 7,138

Referee: K Clark.

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Hearts boss Craig Levein
"How can we be so good and so bad in the same game?"
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