Dundee booked a lucrative William Hill Scottish Cup quarter-final tie against Rangers with a convincing 5-0 win over Dumbarton at Dens Park.
The Ladbrokes Premiership had drawn a blank in the goalless first game but it took them 16 minutes of the fifth-round replay to open the scoring with defender Paul McGinn’s first of the season.
Just before the half-hour mark striker Kane Hemmings took his tally for the season to 19 with captain Gary Harkins again the provider before Greg Stewart made it three in the 51st minute to end any hopes the Championship part-timers had of coming back.
Left-back Kevin Holt and Stewart added the final two goals in a clinical performance from the Taysiders to set up a trip to Ibrox on March 5 for what will arguably be the tie of the round.
That match against the Championship leaders, live on television, will undoubtedly be more feisty, and more exciting, than the win over the Sons.
Before kick-off there was a minute’s applause to mark the recent passing of former Dundee director Maurice Kidd.
In a low-key start to proceedings, Dumbarton set up camp at the edge of their own box, inviting Dundee to break them down and in the early stages there was little to trouble keeper Mark Brown.
However, the breakthrough came when Harkins unlocked the Sons defence with a clever pass to McGinn and the full-back beat the Dumbarton number one at his near post with a powerful drive.
Moments later, the visitors had the chance to level when Scott Taggart raced down the right flank unhampered but when his cross into the box fell to Jordan Kirkpatrick, his scuffed shot was easily saved by Dark Blues’ keeper Scott Bain.
In the 29th minute, after he was booked for simulation by referee Stephen Finnie, Harkins set up Hemmings with a fine pass from the edge of the box and the former Rangers and Barnsley player squeezed the ball past Brown close to his near post.
Dumbarton tried valiantly to get a foothold in the game and in the 39th minute, to his disbelief, former Dundee striker Christian Nade was shown a yellow card for simulation in the Dundee box after turning inside defender Darren O’Dea, with the small bands of Sons fans looking for a penalty.
Stevie Aitken’s side had it all to do after the break to rescue their cup hopes.
But when Stewart weaved his way along the edge of the Dumbarton box early in the second half before rifling a left-footed drive low into the corner, the tie was effectively over.
Harkins and Hemmings, who was booked in the final minute of the first half for what appeared to be dissent, were replaced by Arturo and Craig Wighton as manager Paul Hartley looked to see out the rest of the match with minimum fuss.
Dundee kept pushing for a fourth but it was with less purpose and pace than previously, although in the 70th minute Stewart sent in another powerful left-footed drive from 20 yards, this time just missing the target.
Five minutes later Dundee attacker Rory Loy was booked for simulation in the Dumbarton box after a challenge by Sons skipper Darren Barr before Arturo slashed a shot high over the bar with only Brown to beat.
But in the 78th minute Holt made it 4-0 when, from 10 yards, he slammed in the rebound after he had parried a Wighton shot before Stewart’s 90th minute free-kick from 25 yards also beat the hapless keeper.