Talk of the town: Zaliukas cries fowl at press conference

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AS the Hearts skipper, you’d expect there would be only one thing on Marius Zaliukas’ mind two days before arguably the biggest game in his club’s history.

But when the Lithuanian defender met members of the press at yesterday’s captain’s press conference, he had clearly been henpecked to get home soon or feathers would fly.

With the gathering at the Apex Hotel in the Grassmarket due to get under way at 3pm, reporters were urgently informed that Zaliukas had demanded it be brought forward by 15 minutes – because he had a chicken in the oven. Known for his tough tackling and dodgy disciplinary record, Jambos will be hoping dinner was the only fowl in Zaliukas’ plans.

Naked ambition

GENERATIONS of Hibs fans have lived and died without ever seeing their team lift the Scottish Cup.

So the current batch of success-starved supporters would surely take victory no matter the cost – even if it meant the sight of Garry O’Connor strolling starkers along Princes Street.

This column told how the striker made that vow after the semi-final, but now hundreds of fans have agreed to join him. A Facebook group called ‘I’ll walk down Princes Street naked with Garry O’Connor if we win the cup’ has attracted more than 750 brave members.

Singe when you’re winning

HE’S the dopey Jambo who almost burned away his golden ticket.

But it has now emerged that Ian Downie – the Hearts fan who charred his cup final brief when he tried to iron out a crease in it – shall go to the (foot) ball after all.

He was yesterday issued with a replacement after staff at Tynecastle took pity and arranged a reprint from the SFA. “I might give my shirt an iron before the game,” said a relieved Ian, “but I won’t be ironing my ticket.”

All bets are off

ONE Hibs fan’s bid to cash in on her side’s potential glory has been scuppered - by a bookie.

Joanne Parker wanted to place a £5 treble on O’Connor netting first, the game finishing 3-3 after 90 minutes and her side lifting the cup after extra time. Hoping life would imitate art, she was inspired after her son played out a similar match on his games console.

But, sadly, William Hill rejected the outlandish wager, which could have earned Joanne £100,000.