BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport
Hearts star Jamie Walker is in contention for a dramatic derby-day comeback after returning to action for the Jambos’ under-20 side.
The 22-year-old has struggled with a persistent knee complaint since suffering a knock against Dundee in August, and has been restricted to just eight starts this term.
He underwent an operation to cure the damage in December before returning to full training in the middle of January.
And Walker, who has not played since coming off the bench in the League Cup defeat against Celtic on October 28, was back in action for Hearts’ youth side yesterday.
The gifted winger played the first 45 minutes against Dundee United, helping the wee Jambos to a 3-1 half-time lead and, more importantly for head coach Robbie Neilson, he emerged unscathed from the outing which ultimately ended 3-3.
Neilson will now weigh up whether to include Walker, who scored on Hibs’ last visit to Tynecastle – a 1-1 draw last January – in the squad to face Alan Stubbs’ side on Sunday.
Walker’s importance to Hearts was underlined in December when he was handed a new contract until 2018 despite his injury woes, and the Hearts boss is acutely aware that he could be an invaluable option on the bench for the Scottish Cup fifth round clash.