ADAM ECKERSLEY pulled on a Hibs jersey for the first time as the club’s Development Squad were defeated 3-0 by Rangers at Murray Park.
Jordon Forster, Farid El Alagui and Jamie Insall also featured as Hibs kept the hosts at bay in the opening 45 minutes.
A second-half opener by Ross McRorie and a Ryan Hardie double earned a victory for the Glasgow side.
The game began with the hosts bossing the play as Hardie hit the side-netting, before the forward and Max Ashmore both had shots deflected wide of the target.
Hibs grew into the game and competed well with Rangers as Oli Shaw headed over and fashioned the best chance of the half, but Insall dragged his shot wide from inside the box.
Games hinge on certain moments and that proved to be the case in the 40th minute as McRorie lunged into a tackle on Scott Martin with his studs showing over the ball and caught the midfielder – but referee Tom Clark only issued a yellow card.
After the break, Hibs were on top and were unfortunate not to take the lead as Insall and El Alagui both tested the resolve of the Rangers defence.
With 50 minutes gone, McRorie, who had been fortunate not to see a red card for his challenge on Martin, headed home a cross from Ross Lyon to give Rangers the lead.
Sean Brennan made a great stop to deny Tom Walsh minutes later but the visitors soon found themselves 3-0 down.
In the 67th minute, Fraser Aird released Hardie and he rounded Brennan before walking the ball home.
Less than 60 seconds later, Hardie completed his brace with a controlled finish into the bottom corner.
Hibs battled away and almost pulled a goal back late on as Forster saw a header saved by Liam Kelly. But it was another disappointing result in a slow start to the campaign for Joe McBride’s side.
Hibs Development Squad: Brennan, Dunsmore, Forster, Waugh, Eckersley (Donaldson 53), Stirling, Martin (Duthie 59), Murray, Insall, El Alagui, Shaw (Breen 72). Unused substitutes: Costello, Watson, Smith, Scott.