Maroon Memories: Tommy Walker helps to inspire an eightsome reel

HEARTS outshone their rivals in the matter of scoring for the second week in succession when they defeated St Johnstone 8-2 in the league at Tynecastle.

Tuesday, 24th January 2017, 5:30 am
Updated Wednesday, 25th January 2017, 1:40 pm
Tommy Walker scored one goal and assisted in at least five others

This followed a 14-2 victory over Penicuik Athletic in the first-round tie of the Scottish Cup, and there will be expectancy of another tall score against Elgin City in the next round.

In between, of course, they were held to a 1-1 draw at Paisley in mid-week.

Hearts, by the way, had also inflicted a 7-1 defeat upon St Johnstone at Perth the October before.

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Hearts victory was too easy to be really impressive.

The whole Tynecastle team showed greater resource than the makeshift St Johnstone side, while Tommy Walker’s lead to the inside forwards quickly ended with the Perth half-backs being out-played.

Only in the early stages was the game interesting. Both sides played some neat football and St Johnstone might have gone ahead when Smellie shot against the crossbar with William Waugh beaten.

Thereafter Walker came into the game to such purpose that Hearts were able to cross over with the commanding and somewhat flattering lead of three goals.

Walker always appears to be at his best on heavy going, and he certainly played to reputation. Although scoring but one of the eight goals himself, and that from a penalty kick, he had something to do with at least five of the others. His passing has seldom been better, and he met with a better response than is usual. Jimmy Briscoe, for instance, was more alert on Saturday, and several of his quick crosses were turned to account.

In the second half the home side literally walked through the game, except for bursts of concerted action that usually brought goals. Soon the score had reached 8-0 – Andy Black 4, Archibald Campbell Garrett 3, and Walker – and had Hearts shown the inclination they might, with two more goals, have set up a record Tynecastle league victory.

Instead, Lorimer and Tennant took advantage of slackness to score for St Johnstone in as dreary a finish as could have been feared.

St Johnstone missed McCall, transferred to Huddersfield Town the previous day. His hard-hitting presence might have made a big difference in the early stages.

Besides that, the recast half-back line was never a match for the wiles of Walker, the astute positioning of Garrett, and the pace of Black.

Hearts would go on to finish fourth in the league, behind the dominant Rangers side that won the league by a huge gap of 11 points ahead of Celtic, with Aberdeen finishing third in the last League campaign before the war.

Hearts: Waugh, Anderson, McClure, Robson, Dykes, Brown, Briscoe, Walker, Garrett, Black, Warren