Hibernian came from behind twice to earn a draw with Kilmarnock
Last Updated: 27/02/13 11:26pm
Sammy Clingan: Celebrates opener at Easter Road
Hibernian twice came from behind to earn a point in their Scottish Premier League game with Kilmarnock at Easter Road on Wednesday evening.
Sammy Clingan gave Kilmarnock the lead within a minute of the restart with a long-range strike, before Ryan McGivern levelled five minutes from time. The visitors regained the lead soon after through Jude Winchester, only for Leigh Griffiths to earn Hibs a point with a third goal in as many minutes.
Clingan came the closest in the opening 45 minutes, hitting the bottom of Ben Williams' left hand post with a 25-yard free-kick.
The hosts ignored the warning to Clingan's capabilities and were made to pay for their naivety less than a minute into the second half.
The Northern Ireland international picked the ball up, left of centre and 30 yards from goal, before riding a weak challenge and unleashing a swerving strike that nestled into the far corner of the Hibs net.
Then suddenly at the other end Griffiths was given a yard of space and thrashed the ball into the side-netting from 20 yards. It was a reminder of the potency of the hosts' attack and restored the urgency that had disappeared after the opening exchanges.
Hibs began to dominate the play and had Griffiths go close once again. With five Kilmarnock players in close attendance the forward changed his direction, outsprinted two would-be challengers and narrowly missed the frame of the goal from 25 yards.
It was an impressive moment from the striker but it paled in comparison to a Rory McKeown effort up the other end of the park. Receiving a bouncing ball from Clingan, the full-back lobbed the ball over the closing Paul Cairney and then twisted his body sideways to connect on the half-volley and send the ball crashing back off the far post.
It proved a mere prelude to the goal flurry in the closing stages.
The home pressure finally paid off with McGivern rising highest to power a header into the far corner.
The celebrations were somewhat muted with the green shirts quickly retreating to the halfway line to get a speedy restart and a possible winner. However, the next time they touched the ball they were 2-1 down.
William Gros fed Winchester on the corner of the penalty area. The young attacker was a yard inside the box but had little to aim at with plenty of bodies in his way - however he curled an inch-perfect effort that rested in the back of the net off the outside of the far post.
However, battling Hibs levelled for a second time. A ball into the box dropped for Eoin Doyle, who somehow could only hit the post from close range. Thankfully for Doyle and the Easter Road support Griffiths was there to flick home the rebound for his 19th goal of the season.