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Page last updated at 17:40 GMT, Saturday, 22 March 2008

Smith content to keep on winning

Rangers manager Walter Smith
Smith was delighted with the Rangers work-rate against Hibs

Rangers manager Walter Smith was happy to see his side stretch their lead at the top of the SPL.

"It was hard-fought and at times we were a little bit shaky but overall I thought we deserved it," he told BBC Sport after the 2-1 home win over Hibs.

"Hibs got a lift from their goal and we were hanging on but Allan McGregor didn't have much to do prior to that.

"We're not running away with games but it sets us up nicely for the Old Firm game next week."

Rangers host nearest rivals Celtic next Saturday but Smith was playing down the much-anticipated clash.

"People say the Old Firm games are vital but you have to win the other games," he added.

"We're managing to do that but we're having to work hard for everything we get."

Kevin Thomson was a picture of industry against his former club and Smith took time out to praise the midfielder.

""Kevin was terrific," he said. "He's not long back from a double hernia operation and it's not easy to come back and play at this stage of the season."

With the Old Firm encounter to come, Smith will be hoping his international contingent are used sparingly when Scotland meet Croatia in Wednesday's friendly at Hampden.

"International managers are aware of the situation at this time of the season," said the former Scotland boss.

"We have a big game on Saturday morning and there is not a great deal of time for recovery ahead of such an important game."

see also
Rangers 2-1 Hibernian
22 Mar 08 |  Scottish Premier

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