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Class of '73 would have nothing on final win

John Blackley was part of Hibernian's greatest win over city rivals Hearts, when the Easter Road side recorded a 7-0 victory at Tynecastle way back in 1973.

That result may well be eclipsed next month if Hibs can defeat their neighbours to lift the Scottish Cup.

It needn't have to be 7-0 again – although that would add a sheen to the occasion – but Pat Fenlon's side would shroud their predecessors should they beat Hearts to the cup, while simultaneously ending 110 years without success in the competition.

"A cup final win would certainly eclipse anything that's happened in the past, a Scottish Cup final win against Hearts has never happened," said Blackley, who spent two spells at Hibs spanning 12 years. "The winner would come up trumps big time. It's huge. People like myself who played in that 7-0 game would be more than happy to pass on the baton to these guys, who would make their own history.

"It's not been won in 110 years and that would be great to break that duck. I'm really pleased for the supporters, it's great for the club because it gives them something to hang on to as the last few years have been really hard going for them.

"It's great to see them in that final and it's great for the city. It should be a good day, hopefully. Hearts have had the upper hand for so long but anything can happen on the day. Hibs don't seem to be losing a great deal of goals now which is a pleasing thing, I'm keeping my fingers and other things crossed."

Much of that has been down to the performances and influence of captain James McPake, who joined Hibs on loan from Coventry City in January.

His next task will be to help the Easter Road side overcome Kilmarnock on Sunday, with the club able to strengthen their lead over bottom side Dunfermline Athletic with a win. Blackley has been impressed with McPake thus far and believes the defender will be vital if his side is to enjoy a successful end to the season.

"I think James McPake has made a massive difference," he said. "I don't get a long to many games but I watch them on television and James is such an important feature in the back four and for Hibs. He is a good organiser and motivator; he is vital for Hibs in these next few games."

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