Bonnyrigg Rose boss Robbie Horn last night expressed his delight after the SFA granted the Junior side’s wish by switching their plum William Hill Scottish Cup tie with Hibs to Tynecastle.
Rose had already sought permission from Hearts owner Ann Budge to host next month’s fourth-round tie in Gorgie after their replay win over Dumbarton, with the Midlothian club seeking to host the match away from their New Dundas Park home which has a capacity of just 3,000.
The Evening News understands Hibs will be allocated the Wheatfield Stand at Tynecastle, while Rose will be given the opportunity to sell out both the Gorgie and Roseburn Stands for the match on Saturday, January 21.
The Tynecastle main stand is expected to be out of use to spectators due to the ongoing works on its £12m redevelopment.
“It’s 100 per cent the right decision in my eyes because there’s been so much demand for the game,” said Horn, a former Hearts defender. “You’ll get Bonnyrigg fans, neutrals and a big Hibs support there as well.
“The fact the game is not going to be on television, has been compensated by the fact you’ll get more people going to see it by playing it at Tynecastle. Had it been at New Dundas Park there would’ve been a lot of people that would’ve been disappointed by missing out.
“The club are going to make financial gain from it, but it’s not all about that – it’s also about letting people see it and it will probably be the club’s biggest game in their history.”
Bonnyrigg is expected to be a ghost town for the day next month as locals flood through in their droves to Edinburgh for the one-off derby while neutrals from afar have also expressed an interest in attending the match.
Horn continued: “I think people will be shocked with how big a crowd are going to come from Bonnyrigg. Everybody I’ve spoken to in Bonnyrigg [is wanting to go], then you’ve got all family and friends that are wanting to come to the game as well.
We’ve got 500 young kids from the community club who will be coming along – that’s fantastic and we couldn’t have given away that many tickets if the game had been at New Dundas Park.
“I think we’ll get a lot of neutrals there. There’s been a lot of contact from other Junior teams showing an interest, so I think you’ll get a whole host of teams coming along to watch the game. We are representing the Juniors and other Junior clubs in Scotland and it’s great that we’ve had that support.
“It’s going to be a fantastic occasion and a fantastic day – and we’ll enjoy it. But, at the same time, it’s down to business as well. We want to perform to the best of our abilities and give a good account of ourselves. Like Dumbarton, if we play to our best and Hibs have a slight off day, you never know.”