Hibs recorded their first win in 15 matches while Dunfermline extended their run without victory to eight.

Dunfermline brought back Andy Smith and new signing Paul McDonald teamed up with his former Hamilton team mate Scott McCulloch on the left.

Hibs had by far the best of the first half hour and should have been ahead if they had converted any of their early chances. In 36th minute Steve CRAWFORD headed in a Dow corner that was flicked over the face of the goals. Dunfermline’s best efforts came from Dave Bingham who hammered in a shot that Willie Miller’s head got in the way of and then from Andy Tod whose header from a McDonald/Smith combination just failed to cross the goalline.

Ivo Den Bieman came on for Bingham at the start of a second half which caught fire when Harper elbowed Scott McCulloch on the sidelines and a stretcher was required to lift the big defender. Colin Miller came on as Pars players went after Harper. The referee was totally lacking in control and Miller was fortunate not to be yellow carded for a lunging tackle which totally took out Harper.

Hibs did not have much joy in the second half but the Pars really did not do enough to get the draw. Barnett blasted over and Tod blasted wide. Duarte appeared for the last ten minutes and showed how the ball could be made to move about. McDonald showed signs of pace and skill but looks rather like George Shaw. Midfield was sadly ineffective and one has to hope that new coach Jimmy Bone will stop the old team selecting their favourites when clearly radical changes are required.

DUNFERMLINE: Westwater, Shields, McCulloch (Miller), Tod, Barnett, French, Moore (Duarte), Robertson, Smith, Bingham (Den Bieman), McDonald
Yellow Cards: Barnett, McCulloch, Miller, Robertson
Attendance 10616

League position 7th
Next match v Aberdeen (away) Saturday 17th January 1998