BY IAIN COLLIN – @CCP_sport
HIBERNIAN supporters seeking lucky omens ahead of this afternoon’s Scottish Cup final can cling to two they will hope suggest it could finally be their year in the competition.
Firstly, the last three winners of the cup have all beaten Raith Rovers on their way to lifting the trophy, something Hibs also did earlier this season.
In 2013, Celtic won 3-0 at Stark’s Park in the last-16, a year later St Johnstone saw off the Kirkcaldy club 3-1 in the quarter-finals and last year Inverness Caley Thistle defeated the Fifers 1-0 in the last-eight.
Hibs overcame a tricky trip to face Raith in January when they kicked off their long road to Hampden with a 2-0 success in the fourth round.
All superstitions may have been broken during Hibs’ 114-year wait for a Scottish Cup triumph but the club’s pattern of success and failure in cup finals may also give fans heart as they head for the national stadium today.
Since the Easter Road side’s League Cup triumph of 1972, they have won every fourth major cup final they have played.
Following defeats in the League Cup final in 1974-75, the Scottish Cup final of 1978-79 and the League Cup again in 1985-86, Hibs lifted the Skol Cup in 1991.
The order was then repeated with a League Cup defeat in 1993-94, a Scottish Cup loss in 2000-01 and another League Cup downer in 2003-04, before they again got their hands on some silverware with the CIS Cup in 2007.
Supporters will be dreaming the fates are smiling on them again today after suffering Scottish Cup defeats in 2012 and 2013 and this season’s League Cup loss to Ross County.
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RANGERS hold a firm upper hand when it comes to cup clashes with this afternoon’s Hampden opponents, Hibernian.
The pair have met only once before in a Scottish Cup final, when a second replay and extra-time were required before Rangers came out on top, thanks to a luckless Arthur Duncan own goal.
However, they have played each other a total of 61 times in knock-out matches in the Scottish Cup, League Cup and Challenge Cup through the years.
Rangers have 30 victories to their name, including the League Cup final of October 1993, whilst there have been 17 Hibs wins and 14 draws.
Things are closest in the Scottish Cup, with Hibs having won 10 times to Rangers’ 14, with eight ties having finished in draws.
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TODAY will be Hibernian’s 14th attempt at winning the Scottish Cup since they last lifted the trophy 114 years ago.
The Easter Road outfit have reached the final on 10 previous occasions since 1902 and have taken their quest to three replays, most notably in 1979 when three games were required to separate Hibs and Rangers.
Whilst they came close on that occasion and in taking Celtic to a replay in 1914, the capital club have also suffered some humiliating losses, including their 5-1 defeat to Hearts four years ago and their 6-1 reverse against Celtic in 1972.
Hibs’ Scottish Cup tale of woe
- Since winning in 1902, Hibs have not been short of chances of ending their Scottish Cup hoodoo
1913-14 Celtic 0-0 Hibs
Celtic 4-1 Hibs (replay)
1922-23 Celtic 1-0 Hibs
1923-24 Airdrie 2-0 Hibs
1946-47 Aberdeen 2-1 Hibs
1957-58 Clyde 1-0 Hibs
1971-72 Celtic 6-1 Hibs
1978-79 Rangers 0-0 Hibs
Rangers 0-0 Hibs (replay)
Rangers 3-2 Hibs aet (2nd replay )
2000-01 Celtic 3-0 Hibs
2011-12 Hearts 5-1 Hibs
2012-13 Celtic 3-0 Hibs