At least Hibs haven’t been cursed by a goat ...

William Billy Goat Sianis and his pet goat Murphy
William Billy Goat Sianis and his pet goat Murphy
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HIBS are looking to break their Scottish Cup jinx dating back to 1902 by beating Rangers in the final. Here we look at some other long-running sports hoodoos:

Socceroos

The story goes that Australia hired a witch doctor to curse their opponents during the 1970 World Cup qualifiers. At least, the story in midfielder Johnny Warren’s autobiography tells it that way. The plan apparently backfired. After beating Rhodesia 3-1, Australia’s players were unable to come up with the witch doctor’s £1000 fee so he reversed the curse onto the Socceroos. They lost their next match against Israel as several players took ill. It took Australian comedian and film-maker John Safran, who read Warren’s book, to travel to Africa seeking to reverse the curse in 2004. He discovered the original witch doctor had died so hired another – who apparently killed a chicken and splattered the blood over Safran. Australia proceeded to reach the 2006 World Cup and got further than ever before by reaching the second round.

Baseball

The Chicago Cubs haven’t won the World Series since 1908. The so-called “Billy Goat’s Curse” is, according to legend, down to a Chicago saloon owner named William “Billy Goat” Sianis and his pet goat Murphy being asked to leave Wrigley Field during game four of the 1945 World Series. Sianis cursed the Cubs by declaring: “Them Cubs, they ain’t gonna win no more.”

Southampton: St Mary’s

Southampton’s first five Premier League matches at their new ground brought four defeats and one draw. When it emerged in November 2001 that St Mary’s had been built on the site of an Anglo-Saxon village and may be cursed, the club enlisted the help of a Pagan Priestess. Cerridwen ‘Dragonoak’ Connelly performed an exorcism and the next day Southampton beat Charlton 1-0 with Marian Pahars scoring.

Cricket

England hadn’t beaten Australia at Lord’s for 75 years until the summer of 2009. They took a 1-0 lead in the Ashes series and ended a wait of three generations by beating the Aussies at Lord’s. They wrapped up a 115-run win before lunch on the final day. of the second Test.