Christian Doidge out to silence Hibs cup critics and banish 'very sore' memories
Christian Doidge knows that the best way to stop people bringing up Hibs’ semi-final slip-ups is to round off the season with silverware, which is why no-one at the club will be under-estimating Queen of the South when they kick-off their latest cup run in Dumfries tonight.
The Leith club have now reached the last four in the last three knockout competitions and while the Welshman does not like reliving those disappointments, he says there is little alternative while they remain a talking point.
“It’s obviously been very sore. I played in all three semi-finals and it’s been very hard to get over,” explained the striker. “But it gives you fuel for the next one. You remember that feeling, it’s not very nice, and that’s what gets you doing those extra reps in the gym and working extra on the training pitch.
“They were extremely frustrating times.”
Ousted by Celtic, Hearts and then St Johnstone in those most recent trio of semi-final defeats, while the former is, perhaps, deemed more acceptable, the two latest are definitely laced with thoughts of what might have been.
“As a footballer, you never want to lose, regardless of whether it’s against your local rival,” added Doidge, whose goal in that Hampden appearance was not enough to see them through. “Both hurt as much but the Scottish Cup one was painful in the manner that we lost.
“We’re trying to forget about it - but people keep bringing it up! It’s one of those things. You lose games of football but it’s how you react.”
He is hoping for the kind of reaction that sees the Easter Road side progress to the May 22 final and lift the trophy. If they can add it to a third place finish in the league, it would count as one of the club’s best seasons ever.
“That would be the perfect season, if we can get third and win the cup. But we know it’s not going to be easy. We need to be at the top of our game.
“It would be great if we could achieve that, but we’ve got to really concentrate now and put together a final push.”