Injury boost for Hearts after Don Cowie scare

Don Cowie's neck injury is not as serious as Hearts initially feared, the Evening News can reveal. The midfielder was stretchered off to hospital with his neck in a brace at Dens Park on Friday but suffered only a knock.

Tuesday, 27th December 2016, 5:30 am
Updated Thursday, 29th December 2016, 2:47 pm
Hearts' Don Cowie was injured in this challenge with Dundee duo Kostadin Gadzhalov and Scott Bain. Pic: SNS

A late decision will be made on whether he is included in Hearts’ squad to face Kilmarnock this evening. Head coach Ian Cathro will not take any unnecessary risk despite Cowie being one of his key players.

The former Scotland internationalist sustained the injury just before the hour mark in the 3-2 defeat against Dundee. He collided with the Dens Park defender Kostadin Gadzhalov and goalkeeper Scott Bain inside the penalty area and lay grounded for some time.

Treatment was administered on the spot and the game delayed for eight minutes whilst medics transferred Cowie on to a stretcher. He was then led away in a neck brace and taken to hospital in Dundee. After extensive examinations, it was confirmed that there is no serious damage.

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The 33-year-old has an outside chance of playing against Kilmarnock tonight as Hearts seek the first win of Cathro’s tenure. Krystian Nowak is expected to keep his place in midfield after making his debut against Dundee.

It remains to be seen whether another midfielder, Prince Buaben, has recovered sufficiently from a calf injury to make the Edinburgh club’s matchday squad.