Scott Martin: Leaving Hibs was best thing to happen to me - despite my love for club
Scott Martin admits he was proud to have played for Hibs but says quitting Easter Road for Hamilton Accies was “the best thing that ever happened” to him.
As a teenager, the combative midfielder found it tough to make his mark in the Capital, competing over his four years at the club with the likes of John McGinn, Dylan McGeouch, Marvin Bartley, Scott Allan and Fraser Fvyie for a first team place.
Only nine appearances – and just five starts – underlines the struggle a player who also spent lengthy spells on loan at Forfar and Arbroath faced as he fought to make the breakthrough.
However, 31 games in his first season with Hamilton totally vindicated his decision to seek pastures new. Now 22, Martin said: “I loved my time at Hibs, but I think the best thing that ever happened to me was coming to Hamilton.
“I’m proud of the fact I played 31 games here last season. Nothing against Hibs, but I don’t think I would have got that there. It was a great place to play and there were some really good players.
“But it was hard to break through. Even when I was on the bench I took that as a positive as there were good players being left out while I was getting minutes here or there. I’m proud to have played for Hibs and to have made an impression of some sort.
“But I wouldn’t be the player I am now without Hamilton. I would probably be one of the boys playing ressies [reserves] every week or in that limbo zone of players between the 20s and the first team.”
Martin hasn’t made a single appearance for Brian Rice’s side this season, sidelined by osteitis pubis, a painful inflammation of the pubic bone which also troubled former Celtic star Kieran Tierney. But now he’s ready to reclaim his place in his manager’s plans.
He said: “I’m pain free for the first time since last December. I feel great and ready to show the gaffer what I can do. Last December I just felt a lot of pain but I thought I could manage it and play on. I tried to play through it as long as I could. Some days it was really bad, but others I could soldier on.
“They thought it was a hernia at first and that wouldn’t have been too bad, but then they found out what it really was. Thankfully I didn’t need an operation, but it’s been four months since I last played.
“It was a struggle. I don’t get injured, I don’t like it. But if you’d told me I’d play 31 games I would do it all again.”