05-04-2003 Hibernian (H) SPL

Kilmarnock 6 Hibernian 2

(SPL Match No.32 Apr 5th 2003 - Rugby Park) 

Bobby Williamson's (who?) Hib's side failed to contain Killie's triple "Big Mac Attack" as Killie ran riot over them.  Gary McDonald, Gary McSwegan & Andy McLaren all shone as Hib's were truly outclassed, by a better hungrier outfit from Ayrshire.
Striker Gary McSwegan helped himself to four goals as Kilmarnock demolished hapless Hibs at Rugby Park. 
And the former Hearts hit-man could have had a few more such was the dominance enjoyed by the home side, who are pushing hard for a Uefa Cup place. 
Gary McDonald (right) scored the first of Killie's goals and Kris Boyd landed the final blow from the penalty box. 
The Hibs goals came from Ian Murray and Matthias Jack. 
Kilmarnock gave a league debut to 23-year-old goalkeeper Colin Stewart, while Derek Riordan was handed his first start of the season for Hibs and both men were involved immediately, with the custodian doing well to hold the young striker's shot. 
The home side enjoyed a good spell of early pressure with McDonald looking lively and McSwegan shooting over the bar from 16 yards. 
The opening goal came after 11 minutes when young Gary McDonald (left) recieved a terrific cross from Steve Fulton. From 12 yards the young midfielder still had work to do and he finished the job in style, cracking it first-time into the top corner.
That was a sensational strike to mark the 20-year-old's first goal for the Rugby Park club and how he lapped it up.
Soon after, McSwegan should have added to the Killie tally but fired an easy chance wide. 
The home side's lead lasted just seven minutes when Murray drilled home from 18 yards after a clever pass from Jack. 
Kilmarnock came roaring back and the home fans were cheering again in the 24th minute when McSwegan got on the end of a headed knock down from a Fulton free kick to hit the bottom right corner of the net. 
On the half hour Colgan turned away McSwegan's shot for a corner when he dived at his right-hand post. Jack then put his keeper under pressure with a back-pass but Colgan cleared as Andy McLaren closed in. 
In the 35th minute, Riordan wasted a rare chance for Hibs when he shot over the bar from 20-yards. 
Four minutes from the interval Gary McSwegan struck again for  his second goal of the game with a low drive from 22 yards after Mahood's cross was only partially cleared by the Hibs defence. 
HT: Killie 3 Hibs 1
It was Killie who were next to score only a minute into the second half.
It was a beautifully worked move from Kilmarnock fully deserving of the end product. Fulton provided again with a perfectly paced throughball into the path of Andy McLaren. Pushed wide by the retreating Hibs defence he surveyed the situation before lifting an inviting cross to the back post for McSwegan to head past Colgan for his hat-trick. 

Williamson by now was being seriously mocked by the home fans who took to appropriating that old Hibs ditty There’s Only One Sauzee. 

That there was only one Gary McSwegan yesterday was enough for bedraggled Hibs. 
The visitors were a disjointed outfit and in the 62nd minute, McSwegan grabbed his fourth goal when he tapped the ball into the net from a yard out after being set-up by a deep Peter Canero cross.  
Then most of the grim Hibernian fans in the sunshine filled Chadwick Stand decided they’d had enough and made for the nearest exit. 
Killie replaced McSwegan after 75 minutes with Boyd and unsurprisingly the striker left the park to rapturous applause, none so more than from Killie manager Jim Jeffries.
With ten minutes remaining, Hibs pulled a goal back when Jack slotted home his first goal of the season. 
However, there was to be more misery for the men from Edinburgh as super sub Kris Boyd completed the scoring from the penalty spot in the 89th minute after he had been felled by Paul Fenwick. This was Boyd's 11 goal of the season.

Kilmarnock: Stewart, Shields, Innes, Dindeleux, Canero, McDonald, Fulton (Locke 87), Mahood, Fowler, McSwegan (Boyd 77), McLaren (Murray 90). 
Subs not used: Marshall, McLaughlin.
Scorers: McDonald (11), McSwegan (24, 42, 47, 62), Boyd (pen 90)
Attendance: 5,558.

Post Match Comments
Jim Jefferies......"We scored a great opening goal (McDonald's first for the club) and it just got better and better after that. I couldn't ask for anymore, We've had good away performances at Livingstone and Dunfermline this season but this was the best home display since I came to Rugby Park. All credit to the team for a great performance and now we just have to keep playing the way we did against Hibs to keep trying for third sport in the SPL, which would guarantee us European football next season." More Jim Jefferies Comments
Bobby Williamson ....... "I'd like to apologise to the fans who traveled to Kilmarnock for the performance we put on today. The way we played it's going to be tough (to finish in the top six). We don't seem to be learning from out mistakes and that's costing us dearly. But these are the guys that we've got and we have to carry on and hope that things go our way next Saturday. To be perfectly honest, the way I feel now I hope we don’t get into the top six, because if we come up against teams of the class Kilmarnock were, we will get punished, It’s as simple as that. 
Scotland on Sunday... He would have been excused for basking in the limelight after but McSwegan instead opted for a study in modesty. Describing himself as "fortunate" he did at least admit that it was the first time he’d registered four in a Premierleague encounter. "But I don’t want to detract from what the team did." Fair enough but that in turn should not detract from what McSwegan did.
Glasgow Herald...For much of this season, Rugby Park has held on to its tradition as something of a fortress. Kilmarnock have ground out many an unspectacular home win here to elevate them into the European reckoning. On Saturday, however, they emerged from a slightly fearful shell that seemingly inhibited the top-drawer football they showed they were capable of in sweeping Hibs aside. It is perfect timing for Jim Jefferies' side, as they have enjoyed a run of form that has given them a lot to play for, stretching 18 games. The carrot-dangling exercise that surely dominates Kilmarnock's pep talks has rubbed off as they played with composure, tenacity and ruthlessness, perhaps exposing Hibs' own forlorn-looking desires to eat at the top table come the split. The key to the convincing nature of their display was the industry and energy of the midfield. Peter Canero's pace on the left flank, McLaren's old head and craft, Fulton's bulky experience, and Alan Mahood's graft all combined to maximum effect. Killie, robust in defence, solid and fluent in midfield, and ruthless in attack, were a joy to watch and in hammering Hibs equaled a club record for SPL wins in a season.

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