London Hearts Supporters Club

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<-Page <-Team Wed 13 Apr 2005 Hearts 1 Hibernian 2 Team-> Page->
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John Robertson <-auth None auth-> John Rowbotham
[G O'Connor 68] ;[D Shiels 73]
18 of 018 Lee Miller 39 L SPL H

Ref escapes serious injury

THE referee at last night’s derby match was struck on the head by a coin hurled by a supporter, it was revealed today.

John Rowbotham escaped injury after he was hit by what he described as a "flying object" during the match at Tynecastle.

He reported the incident to police after Hibs 2-1 victory and, after an inspection, officers found three other coins on the turf.

Lothian and Borders Police are investigating the incident and the SFA said a full investigation will be carried out in due course.

Match commander Superintendent Terry Powell said the coins were thrown at the end of the match. He said three coins were found on the pitch close to the Wheatfield and Roseburn stands.

He added: "We have checked CCTV footage but it is very difficult where exactly the coins were thrown from because all the fans were up chanting and waving their arms about. They were thrown when the players came back onto the pitch at the end of the match.

"Fortunately the referee was not injured but it could have been more serious. Anything thrown is a serious incident and it is something we are trying to eradicate.

"We will be reporting the matter to the SFA."

A spokesman for the SFA said:

Throwing coins is a worrying trend and people have been quite badly injured in the past by incidents such as these. However, we are confident that security at Tynecastle was up to scratch. Apart from making fans hand over loose change, there’s not much more you can do to stop this from happening. I am sure the police will take the appropriate steps and, when it is reported to the SFA it will be taken very seriously and a full inquiry will be carried out."

Two teenage Hibs fans were also arrested for running on to the pitch after their team scored. The two boys - aged 14 and 16 - were also seen taunting Hearts fans as they stormed onto the pitch.

They have been charged with breach of the peace.

Two more men were arrested outside the ground and a 42-year-old Hibs fan was held inside the ground.

Commenting on the other arrests made at last night’s match, the SFA spokesman added: "If they are found guilty then I hope they will be dealt with appropriately through the courts."

Hibs chairman and chief executive Rod Petrie today said he had received no report regarding coin-throwing at last night’s match.

Taken from the Scotsman

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