Queen of South v Hibernian: Palmerston striker Dobbie eyes another fairytale cup run

Stephen Dobbie was part of the Queen of the South side beaten 3-2 by Rangers in the 2008 Scottish Cup final
Stephen Dobbie was part of the Queen of the South side beaten 3-2 by Rangers in the 2008 Scottish Cup final
Scottish Cup third round: Queen of South v Hibernian
Venue: Palmerston Park Date: Monday, 5 April Time: 19:45 BST
Coverage: Watch live on BBC Scotland; listen to commentary on Sportsound and follow live text updates on the BBC Sport website and app

Stephen Dobbie's love affair with Queen of the South has mileage left in it yet as the club attempt to plot a path to Hampden.

The 38-year-old striker's commute to work is further than most, with a journey north from his home in Lytham, Lancashire, a few times a week.

But Dobbie's enthusiasm for the Scottish Championship club that launched his career towards stardom in English football is undimmed.

And with the chance of a Scottish Cup scalp when Hibernian visit Palmerston in the Scottish Cup third round on Monday, plus a late surge for the Premiership promotion play-offs firmly on track, there's plenty of adventure around the corner.

"Queens train in Hamilton and the travelling isn't too bad, just a couple of hours," says Dobbie.

"When you find a place where you love playing your football and have success there, you take to the fans and they take to you, it's hard to leave.

"When I left to go to Swansea, I always said I'd come back to Queens at some point. I've kicked on in the last five years and scored plenty of goals.

"A play-off spot and a cup run wouldn't be a bad season. I'd take the play-offs before anything, to get anywhere near the Premiership for Queens would do for me."

'We ended up gutted, but it was a great run'

Dobbie has previous at Palmerston when it comes to remarkable cup runs. In his first spell, his goals were integral as Queens reached their first Scottish Cup final in 2008.

Dundee were dispatched in the last eight, with Aberdeen toppled 4-3 in a "bonkers" semi-final before Rangers proved a step too far.

Even then, Dobbie's side fought back from 2-0 down to go level at half-time, only for Kris Boyd to nab a winner for Uefa Cup runners-up Rangers playing their fourth game in eight days while Queens had been idle for a month.

"You get through one round, and then another, and just never know where it can go," adds Dobbie.

"The whole town of Dumfries was buzzing. When we got it back to 2-2 in the final we could have won it, we had a couple of chances.

"We ended up gutted, but it was a great run."

Now comes a reunion Hibs, the club who gave Dobbie his first experience of top-team football when he left Ibrox in 2003 having failed to make the breakthrough.

"It was some Hibs team - we had young boys coming through like Tam McManus, Scott Brown, Kevin Thomson, Garry O'Connor, Derek Riordan," he says.

"I loved it. [Manager] Bobby Williamson was great to me. We got to the League Cup final and I scored the equaliser against Rangers in the semis.

"It opened my eyes to the standards needed at the top level."

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