A very young Hearts Development side gained a creditable and deserved 1-0 win against Inverness Caley Thistle at Riccarton.
Hearts, with injuries, suspensions and a first-team fixture against Ross County at Dingwall tomorrow night, fielded a very young side against a more experienced Inverness team with the permitted five over-age players in their starting line-up.
Both teams began brightly with Angus Beith and Callumn Morrison having early efforts for Hearts, with goalkeeper Jack Hamilton, Hearts’ only over-age player, easily dealing with a shot from Andrew Macrae in reply.
The Tynecastle youngsters were to dominate proceedings for the remainder of the half with Ian Smith coming closest to scoring with two fine efforts, a shot blocked, and another one saved at the junction of post and crossbar by keeper Daniel Hoban.
The visitors began the second half with a bit more purpose, however Hearts were soon back in control with Alistair Roy and Beith coming close with efforts that Daniel Hoban saved superbly.
The visitors rarely threatened although Hamilton had to look lively to stop a shot from Ryan Hughes. Hearts created more chances before the only goal came on 73 minutes, Roy netting a Dale Baxter cut back from the left from inside the six yard box for a well deserved winner.
Hearts: J Hamilton; McKirdy, Howlett-Mundle, L Henderson, Reid, Morrison, Beith (Cochrane 77), Baxter, Moore (Irving 74), I Smith, Roy. Unused subs: Fisher, C Hamilton, K Smith.