Hibs’ Lewis Stevenson: ‘Surreal’ to see Proclaimers in awe of me

Lewis Stevenson promotes Hibs 'Time for Heroes' DVD, which goes on sale this Friday. Pic: SNS
Lewis Stevenson promotes Hibs 'Time for Heroes' DVD, which goes on sale this Friday. Pic: SNS
8
Have your say

The Proclaimers are well used to lapping up the adulation of thousands of fans as they take the stage each night.

But the tables were turned when Hibs-daft Charlie and Craig Reid agreed to play some of their best known hits at Lewis Stevenson’s sell-out 
testimonial dinner.

Lewis Stevenson is the only Hibs player to lift the Scottish Cup and League Cup

Lewis Stevenson is the only Hibs player to lift the Scottish Cup and League Cup

Known world-wide and well accustomed to rubbing shoulders with some of the music business’ biggest names, the twins found themselves reacting like any other Hibs fan as they finally got their hands on the Scottish Cup, the trophy which had eluded the Easter Road club for 114 years.

“It was surreal,” recalled 
Stevenson, a veteran of more than ten years in a green-and-white shirt and 322 appearances for the Capital outfit.

“They were the ones who did me a favour that night, but they were almost in awe and they were thanking me, saying what we’d managed to do meant to much to them.

“It was a massive thing for them. They were just so happy and so pleased. I saw them with the cup and they were just like normal fans, getting their photos taken with it.

Charlie and Craig Reid of the Proclaimers were delighted to get their hands on the Scottish Cup. Pic: TSPL

Charlie and Craig Reid of the Proclaimers were delighted to get their hands on the Scottish Cup. Pic: TSPL

“They’re known all over the world so it was nice to see what it meant to them. They might have been happy to change places with me on that day at Hampden – but maybe not at one of the less glamorous away games on a Tuesday night.”

If Charlie and Craig might gladly have swapped the stage for the pitch that day in May, Stevenson admitted he wouldn’t mind extending the current “Persevered Tour”, which has seen the cup visit dozens of local venues in recent weeks by helping the duo to take it to an even wider audience.

“I wouldn’t mind joining them on one of their tours,” said the 28-year-old. “I’ve had a look at their itinerary and they go to some nice places in 
America which would be good.”

Five months on from that historic day at Hampden and the euphoria surrounding it refuses to fade, the Easter Road club this week launching a DVD, a near three-hour epic recalling the cup campaign, the after-match party and, of course, the stunning scenes in the Capital as 150,000 took to the streets as Alan Stubbs and his players paraded the trophy.

Man-of-the-match at the age of 19 as Hibs lifted the CIS Insurance Cup nine years ago, Stevenson revealed he believed he was destined to end his career as “a failure”, two previous Scottish Cup finals having ended in defeat.

Now he stands as the first Hibs player to have won both the Scottish and League Cups but, he insisted, he has his sights on adding further silverware before he hangs up his boots.

Joking that he was 
“disappointed” there was no red carpet as he and his 
team-mates gathered at the Vue Cinema at Ocean Terminal for the premiere of “Time for Heroes” on the big screen, Stevenson said: “I’ve been through a few bad experiences which you’ll be remembered for, so it’s nice to be remembered for a happy moment. Hibs have been around so long, but it’s one of the biggest moments in the club’s history.

“I feel very lucky to be 
part of it but I’ve never 
actually watched the game back, even though I know the score. I hate seeing myself playing, it doesn’t feel like me.”

Revealing John Collins – boss when Hibs won the CIS Cup – was one of the first to text his congratulations on landing the “big one”, Stevenson said: “I genuinely thought I was destined for failure so it was such a relief and a weight off my shoulders.

“I’ve heard a few times I’m the first Hibs player to win both cups, but I’m lucky to have been here for so long. I suppose it was going to happen to someone to I’m just glad it was me.

“It was incredible to see how many people turned up for the parade, it’s been life-changing.”

Stevenson admitted he’d become so used to missing out – Hibs had been beaten in the League Cup final by Ross County only two months earlier – he’d actually stopped dreaming of winning.

He said: “It’s the least confident I’ve ever been going into a final just because I’d tasted defeat so often. It makes it worse when you think about what it might have been.”

And, he revealed, he felt another chance had slipped through his fingers as Rangers midfielder Andy Halliday put the Ibrox club ahead, only for Anthony Stokes to claim his second of the game before skipper David Gray’s stunning last-minute winner.

He said: “I thought when Halliday scored that might have been it for us, although if we’d lost I wouldn’t have admitted to it.

“There was a part of me that thought ‘here we go again, we’ve flattered to deceive’ because I thought we’d been playing quite well at that point. We battled back and the rest is history I suppose.

Hopefully we can go on and win a few more, I don’t see why not. The league and promotion is our main priority this season, but we still want to have a good shot at the cups.”

Stevenson revealed those who study the DVD closely – around 2000 have already been pre-ordered with in-store sales beginning on Friday – will spot he’s actually missing as his team-mates join in that emotional rendition of The Proclaimers classic “Sunshine on Leith following the trophy presentation.

He said: “It was nice 
to have my kids Louie and Luna behind the podium, it was a special moment. I’m not there because I was with them, it’s something I’ll always treasure.”