MAROON and white scarves were twirled. Hampden reverberated to songs of Glorious Hearts and on the touchline, two Tynecastle legends, former team-mates, embraced as the loser with all sincerity wished good luck to the wining manager.

The Jambos are in the Scottish Cup final again. What a story given where this famous old club was five years ago.

Craig Levein never won anything as a player, nor as manager. Yet. Is this the year?

If it is to be, Hearts need to be better than they were here for long stages when their predictability played into the hands of Inverness Caledonian Thistle who lacked luck and quality but not spirit.

The Highlanders and their manger John Robertson, the ultimate Hearts legend, have nothing to apologise for. They looked a Championship team in a second-half in which all the goals were scored but still had their moments.

Robertson’s name was sung by the Hearts fans during the match. After all he did, as the ditty goes, put the ball in the Hibees’ net an awful lot.

However, more than anyone, it is Hearts owner Ann Budge who deserves this. She hasn’t got everything right but is a leader any club would want. Everything the first lady of Scottish football does if for the good of her beloved team.

And next month we will find out whether Heart of Midlothian can win their first silverware since 2012 when they beat Hibs in this very competition.

Hearts have defeated both Celtic and Aberdeen this season, so they have a as good a chance as any team to lift that famous trophy when they return to the national stadium on May 25.

Much will rest on Uche Ikpeazu. Hearts' giant of a striker is not perfect but is hell of an effective footballer.

He scored the opener and won a penalty which led to the third goal. He bullied Inverness and while his first touch can lead to a tackle and his decision-making remains questionable, the Englishman is handful.

The first-half was a brutal watch. Inverness would have been happy enough with such a scrappy 45 minutes and from the off their plan was clear to see. Be solid at the back, organised in midfield and hope that a cross would lead to the ball falling someone’s feet.

Hearts had most if the possession and got the ball out wide on a number of occasions only for a cross to hit the first defender or miss out everyone inside the area.

The one moment of note came on 26 minutes. Hearts midfielder Olly Lee’s pass was deflected into Ikpeazu’s path and the striker bore down on the Inverness goal in a manner which was anything but subtle.

He should have laid a pass off but opted to go for a shot which was wrong and weak. That was the one highlight.

The whistle was welcomed. The second-half could not have been more different.

Hearts were right on it from the restart. Not even a minute had passed when the excellent Lee hit a shot from 35-yards which was still travelling as Inverness goalkeeper Mark Ridgers got his fingers to the ball.

Aidan Keena followed that up with a shot from outside the box. A goal was coming. It duly arrived on the 48th minute.

Lee took a short corner to Jake Mulraney which Inverness didn’t read. He crossed into the six-yard box, Liam Polworth on the line didn’t get any power on an attempted clearance, the ball fell to Ikpeazu and he sent it into the roof of the net.

Now Hearts could relax and play a bit. Or so you would have thought. As it was, Inverness had two great chances, one of which was controversially ruled out.

On 57 minutes, Polworth was brought down by Arnaud Djoum at the edge of the box, Joe Chalmers fancied his chances and his left foot shot would have curled enough to finish in the top corner had Hearts goalkeeper Zdenek Zlamal superbly got his hand up to push the ball against the bar.

And then came a massive talking point.

Inverness defender Jamie McCart was in an offside position inside the Hearts box when the ball landed at him with his back to goal. The assistant’s flag was up right away and the Hearts players had stopped as McCart quite brilliantly spun and sent the ball into the top corner.

But on a second viewing, the pass to McCart came inadvertently from Mulraney who had made a tackle so it wasn’t an offside.

This the bounce of the ball manager’s talk about. It didn’t go the way of Inverness and on 65 minutes they were 2-0 down.

Again, it came from a Lee corner only this time his cross sailed right to the back post where John Souttar met it on the volley.

Within minutes, Chalmers had another fine shot from distance which Zlamal pushed wide. They had not given up hope of getting back into the match.

However, in 72 minutes, Lee played a lovely pass over the top for Ikpeazu, Ridgers got off his line but was second to the ball and brought down the Hearts man giving referee Don Robertson an easy decision to make.

Sean Clare, who had not been on for long, took the penalty and sent Ridgers the wrong way. Done and dusted.

Oliver Bozanic, another Hearts substitute, saw his effort brush the top of the net, and by the end the men from Gorgie were coasting.

This rollercoaster of a season might just end triumph.