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7 of 010 Kevin McHattie 5 ;Billy King 40 ;Jamie Walker 49 ;Ryan Stevenson 64 ;Gary Oliver 85F A

Raith Rovers 0-5 Heart of Midlothian


Raith Rovers 0-5 Heart of Midlothian
(McHattie 5', B.King 40', Walker 49', Stevenson 63', Oliver 87')
From Hearts Media at Stark's Park.

Hearts won their third pre-season match of the summer with an impressive 5-0 demolition of Raith Rovers in the kingdom of Fife this evening.

Goals from Kevin McHattie, Billy King, Jamie Walker, Ryan Stevenson and Gary Oliver gave a dominant Hearts side the victory, scoring five for the first time since May 2012.

The Gorgie Boys took to the field at a warm Stark's Park looking to continue the good form shown in Saturday's friendly win over Dunfermline. Gary Locke made two changes to the side that earned a victory at East End Park, blisters-ridden Jason Holt was replaced by Jamie Walker, while Dale Carrick made way for Billy King to make an appearance.

Backed by another impressive away support, the Jambos - clad in their new white away kit - looked to impose themselves on the play early.

Scott Robinson is facing a big season in his Hearts career, and his first contribution of the match was one of quality. He spun his marker on the edge of the Hearts penalty area and carried the ball 60 yards up the park.

His slide rule pass found Ryan Stevenson, and the striker's cross was deflected out for a corner. Hearts weren't to be denied for long, however, as from the resulting corner, the ball broke to Kevin McHattie who showed impressive striking prowess to direct the ball high into the net with his right foot.

When facing a team that includes five former players, the odds of an ex-Jambo coming back to haunt Hearts is always a possibility. Calum Elliot nearly did just that, as his volley on 9 minutes produced a sensational save from Jamie Macdonald, with with Jamie Hamill clearing the ball from under the crossbar.

After quarter of an hour, Hearts should have doubled their lead. Jason Thomson missed a ball from Robinson through to King, and the young winger coolly wrong-footed his marker. His cut back to Stevenson was accurate, although the striker's finish was weak.

Raith were having the better of the game, despite being down a goal, and nearly levelled proceedings on the half hour. Thomson's cross field pass found Joe Cardle, and his pass picked out Liam Fox. The ex-Jambos youth hit a stinging drive that may have resulted in more had it not been straight at MacDonald

Just before the interval, Hearts made it 2-0, arguably against the run of play. Callum Tapping's pass split the defence to send Billy King clear. He beat his marker with a lovely stepover, and his early shot deceived Ross Laidlaw between the sticks. The keeper may have done better, but King deserves credit for his direct play.

Moments later, Jamie Walker was crudely taken down after a mazy run. Despite arguments from half the team over who would take the free kick, Jamie Hamill won the argument. The full back's free kick was on target, but Laidlaw held the ball comfortably as the half came to a close.

minutes after the restart, it was 3-0. Jamie Walker pounced on a loose pass in the midfield and raced clearly. The winger's pace was too much for Douglas Hill in the Rovers' backline, and Walker sprinted clear to coolly pass the ball past Laidlaw in front of the 932 Hearts fans in the McDermid Stand.

Unlike Saturday's match, Hearts had clearly come out to ensure the game would be won, and the fourth goal their play deserved soon arrived. Walker was involved again, as his run and powerful shot forced Laidlaw into a scrambling save with Ryan Stevenson screaming for the through pass. The ball rebounded back out and fortunately for Walker's eardrums, he was spared a telling off as Stevenson buried the rebound.

The Jambos rearguard had been solid throughout the match, and were clearly determined to keep a clean sheet. Substitute Gary Naysmith made a superb block to prevent Jason Thomson from getting on the scoresheet with three minutes remaining.

Hearts had made full use of their young substitutes' bench, and experience met youth to provide the 5th and final goal of the night. Naysmith's cross evaded the Raith defence, and debutant Gary Oliver beat the offside trap to meet the ball with an excellent header into the corner of the net. The young striker is sure to remember his brief 7 minutes in Kirkcaldy with fond memories in the future.

Raith Rovers: Laidlaw, Thomson, Booth, Trialist, Hill, Fox, Anderson, Moon, Spence, Elliot, Cardle. Subs not used: Smith, Donaldson, Callachan, Ellis, Vaughan, Trialist, Murray, Matthews, McGurn.

Hearts: Macdonald; Hamill, McKay, McGowan, McHattie (Naysmith 72); Walker (Oliver, 83), Tapping, Robinson (A.King, 83); Smith (Nicholson, 76), B.King, Stevenson. Subs not used: Ridgers, Gordon.

Referee: Alan Muir

Top man: Callum Tapping

Hearts World

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