HIBERNIAN striker Christian Doidge reckons he and his team-mates made life difficult for themselves at Easter Road on Friday night – but insisted that getting points on the board is the most important thing as Jack Ross’ side aim for a third-place finish this season.

A first-half brace from Kevin Nisbet put the Leith club in the driving seat against Hamilton and a third from captain Paul Hanlon looked to have sewn up the contest in the capital before two late goals from Accies ensured a nervy end to the game.

Hibs held on though to secure their sixth Premiership victory of the campaign and while the scoreline suggests a tight contest, Doidge says that three points was a just reward for his side, given their dominance for the first hour or so of the match.

“It was definitely a lot more stressful than it should have been,” he said. “We were outstanding in the first half; we had all of the ball and we created loads of chances.

“Second half, they changed their shape and brought players on who changed the game and we struggled a bit. When you concede two penalties it’s always going to be hard. Luckily we got three points in the end but for large parts of the game we were brilliant.

“To be honest, I’m really frustrated going out of that game. I had two good chances where I back myself to score. So I’m frustrated not to score them but delighted that we got the win.

“That’s 20 points now which is two points a game, so that’s a good return. We’ve got a few cup games coming up now and a break from the league so hopefully we can do well in the cup too.”

The Welshman may not have got on the scoresheet himself on Friday night but he had a huge hand in what proved to be the game’s defining moment. Melker Hallberg swung a looping free-kick in towards the back post where Doidge was waiting and the striker headed it back across the face of goal for Hanlon to nudge it over the line for Hibs’ third.

“We’ve been working on that a lot in training,” Doidge revealed. “A lot of the crosses were a bit short which is a little bit frustrating but the one that that went to the back post, we managed to get Paul a goal.

“We haven’t scored too many goals from set-plays this year and I think we’re a real threat from them, so it was good to get that one.”

With the opening fixtures of the Betfred Cup on the horizon, Hibs’ push for European football will take a back seat in the coming weeks. Some might fear that the break from league duty could damage the momentum that has been building at Easter Road in recent weeks but Doidge points out that this season more than ever, a strong showing in the competition could have a huge impact off the pitch.

He explained: “It’s a massive earner for the football club and in these times, it’s crucial to get money for the club.

“It’s definitely an ambition of ours every year and our goal is to get into Europe and do really well in a cup competition. It’s definitely going to be an opportunity for us to go further.”

Meanwhile, Hamilton goalkeeper Kyle Gourley is hopeful of retaining his spot in Brian Rice’s starting XI after being parachuted into the first team squad for Accies’ visit to the capital.

First-choice keeper Ryan Fulton is self-isolating after returning a positive Covid test and after Gourley  caught the eye with a few fine stops against Hibs, he’s hoping he can do enough during Fulton’s absence to make the number one jersey his own.

He said: “Ryan felt unwell and had Covid symptoms so he’s at home self-isolating. He’s doing the right thing and I got thrown into the deep end in a game like this. It is what it is.

“I’ve always got to be ready. I’m always ready to play so as soon as you know, you look forward to it more than anything.

“I can only do my job and that’s to make saves. I do that every day in training and the boys see that every day. It’s nothing out of the ordinary so that’s all I need to do: make saves and help the team out when I can.

“Everyone goes out on the pitch and wants to keep their place in the side, that’s part and parcel of football. I’ll wait and see and hopefully enjoy playing. I wish all the best to Ryan for coming back fit and getting over Covid.”