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Last Updated: Saturday, 24 May, 2003, 15:56 GMT 16:56 UK
Thistle beat Hibs in thriller
Alex Burns celebrates his winning goal
Alex Burns celebrates his winning goal
Hibs 2-3 Partick Thistle

Partick Thistle gave Gerry Collins a winning start to his managerial career in a fascinating game at Easter Road.

The Jags twice came from behind after Hibs took the lead through Matthias Jack and Scott Brown.

Gerry Britton and David Rowson pulled Thistle level to set up a rousing finish.

And it was the Jags who took the three points as Alex Burns headed a late goal to give outgoing manager John Lambie the perfect farewell.

Hibs took an early lead when Grant Brebner won a free kick on the right. Derek Riordan whipped the ball in and Jack met it at the near post to head past Arthur.

Shortly afterwards, Burns should have equalised for Thistle when he found himself through on goal, but he hesitated to allow Ian Murray to get in an excellent tackle.

Neverthless, the ball fell back to Burns, but though he was able to go round Nick Colgan, his shot hit the side-netting.

Then Colgan showed the Hibs fans what they will be missing next season when he superbly tipped Kevin McGowne's goalbound header over the bar.

Thistle drew level in 28 minutes courtesy of a fantastic strike by Britton who lashed the ball beyond Colgan on the half-volley as the ball fell to him 10 yards out.

Riordan almost put Hibs back into the lead immediately, when some nice build-up play allowed him to get in a shot that Arthur just managed to turn by the post.

Scott Brown celebrates his third goal in two games
Scott Brown celebrates his third goal in two games
Minutes later though, Hibs were back in front when Brown finished an excellent move by tapping in Steven Whittaker's cross.

Jamie Mitchell squandered a great chance to equalise after a fantastic run and cross from Ian Ross, but Mitchell blasted the ball over the bar.

Seven minutes into the second half, Thistle pulled level for the second time as the Hibs defence failed to clear their lines from a free kick and when the ball fell to Rowson, he drove the ball low into the net despite the best efforts of Colgan.

Play continued to rage from one end to the other and when Matyus' shot fell kindly for Brebner, Arthur reacted well to keep his effort out.

Martin Hardie almost put Thistle into the lead for the first time in the game with 20 minutes remaining, but his effort came back off the post.

At the other end, Jarkko Wiss almost squeezed the ball into the net from six yards out, but the ball was eventually scrambled clear.

Burns was denied by a superb save from Colgan with four minutes remaining, but as Hibs failed to clear, the ball was crossed back into the box for the Thistle striker to head home.

Chic Charnley came on as a substitute for Thistle for the closing minutes to great applause from both sets of fans as he brought down the curtain for the final time on his professional playing career.

Hibernian: Colgan, Whittaker (McManus 66), Smith, Matyus, Murray, Brebner, Jack, Wiss (Nicol 77), Thompson, Scott Brown, Riordan.

Subs Not Used: Alistair Brown, Reid, O'Neill.

Booked: Wiss, Brebner.

Partick: Arthur, Lilley, McGowne, Milne, Hardie (Charnley 87), Rowson, Mitchell, Ross, Waddell (Fleming 18), Burns, Britton, Fleming (Whyte 63).

Subs Not Used: Pinkowski, Gibson.

Booked: Britton, Burns.

Att: 9,286

Ref: J Underhill



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