Shiels and Fenlon agree Sunday’s cup tie is 50-50

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KENNY Shiels rued the loss of two late goals in a frantic game at Easter Road last night after his Kilmarnock side twice appeared to have the three points in the bag.

A Sammy Clingan strike early in the second half gave his side the lead but in a manic three-minute period at the end of the game, Hibernian equalised through Ryan McGivern. Youngster Jude Winchester then put the Ayrshire side in front again, before Leigh Griffiths grabbed Hibs a point two minutes from time.

“I thought we had it won when we scored the second goal to make it 2-1,” Shiels admitted. “But it was a great game of football. We got a great goal early on in the second half with our kids being heavily involved in it. They were all brilliant tonight. It was a great finish from Sammy.

“We hit the post twice during the game and looked like we would add to our goal tally. Hibs weren’t threatening us apart from at corner kicks and we knew that would happen because of their superior physique as we’ve got a number of players out.

“We were lacking height and that’s why they got their first equaliser. We scored almost immediately with a great strike from Jude.

“It was good to be 2-1 up but it was a foul on James Dayton in the lead up to their second and the boys are gutted in the dressing room because of that.” he said.

Hibs visit Rugby Park on Sunday in a Scottish Cup quarter-final, and Shiels believes the tie is too close to call “Football is not one dimensional like other sports and you can’t tell what kind of game Sunday will be because there are so many aspects which could affect the result. You just can’t predict what way games between teams in this league will go.”

Pat Fenlon was happy his side were able to fight back in the second half and thought his side received their just rewards. “I thought we deserved at least a point,” he said. “We scored a goal to level it up and they immediately go in front again. We should have been able to deal with their second goal a bit better. To concede a goal so late was a hammer blow but to then equalise is great credit to the players.

“Tonight shows there is little between the teams and I think it will be the same on Sunday. It will be a tough game but we are looking forward to it. We’ll have a big support at the match and hopefully their pitch is better than ours to allow us to play some decent football.”