Hearts 2-2 St Mirren

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Highlights - Hearts 2-2 St Mirren

St Mirren clambered off the canvas to stun Hearts and secure a Scottish Cup quarter-final replay in Paisley.

Graham Carey's first-half free-kick from 20 yards put Saints in front as they bossed the opening exchanges.

However, Craig Beattie replied with a header and crossed for substitute Rudi Skacel to put the Edinburgh side ahead on 48 minutes.

St Mirren looked out, but Marius Zaliukas deflected Nigel Hasslebaink's effort into his own net to level.

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Interview - Hearts head coach Paulo Sergio

The Scottish Premier League rivals will do battle again on Wednesday, 21 March for a place in the last four at Hampden Park.

The visitors had a strong claim for a penalty early on when Steven Thompson chased and harried the Hearts defenders to win the ball, before searching out Gary Teale. The veteran's strong effort at goal struck Danny Grainger's hand as he went to block, but referee Stevie O'Reilly waved away the appeals.

Danny Lennon's side had made a whirlwind start and finally made the breakthrough after 27 minutes. Andy Webster fouled Nigel Hasselbaink on the edge of the box after some loose play from Adrian Mrowiec.

St Mirren set-piece specialist Carey needed no second invitation and stepped up to strike a left-footed free-kick through a gap in the Hearts wall and into the net.

The visitors continued to look the livelier side, but Hearts were not a spent force and stunned their opponents with an equaliser after 37 minutes.

Hearts striker Craig Beattie
Craig Beattie scored Hearts' opening goal and set up the second

Paulo Sergio's side won their first corner of the match and Grainger's pinpoint delivery found Beattie, who guided a header past Craig Samson for his first Hearts goal.

It was now game on, and the Portuguese manager showed his attacking intent by replacing midfielder Mrowiec with St Mirren tormentor-in-chief Skacel, who has a terrific strike record against the Buddies.

Hearts thought they had snatched the advantage in first-half stoppage time when Ian Black's attempted shot found its way to Beattie at the back post, but the former Celtic striker was controversially flagged offside as he squeezed the ball over the line. Television replays suggested he had in fact been onside.

The Tynecastle side did not appear to feel sorry for themselves as they flew out the traps for the second half.

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Interview - St Mirren forward Nigel Hasselbaink

Stephen Elliott's drive from 16 yards stung the palms of Samson and Ryan McGowan forced the St Mirren keeper to parry with his effort on the rebound. The ball found Elliott once again, but he squandered a clear opportunity when he fired wide of the post.

Lennon's side failed to heed the warning signs and paid the price. Beattie found substitute Skacel's head with a cross from the left to beat Samson and seize the advantage.

Hearts were a team transformed and Skacel could have made it 3-1, however he took a touch too many in the penalty area and defender David van Zanten intervened before he could pull the trigger.

They were to rue that missed opportunity as St Mirren conjured up an unlikely leveller and a replay with six minutes remaining.

Hasselbaink and Teale brought out great saves from Jamie MacDonald before the striker sclaffed the ball across goal and Zaliukas' heel diverted the ball past his own goalkeeper.

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