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Celebrate A Fan's Life
Killie welcome Hibs back to play the fixture that was sadly interrupted by a fan's death and want to play how he would have wanted
Kilmarnock manager Kenny Shiels wants tomorrow's game with Hibs to be played as a tribute to the fan who lost his life the last time the clubs met. The meeting at Rugby Park on 5 May was abandoned with the score at 1-1 just after half-time when season ticket holder James Haswell collapsed in the stands with a suspected heart attack and he later died in hospital. Mr Haswell's family will be at the game and Shiels is keen for the occasion to be a celebration of the his life.He said: "We are expecting a really good game. We are looking forward to the occasion because it's to celebrate the life of one of our supporters. That's foremost in our thoughts as we go into the game. Someone said to me that it just puts things into perspective and that life is more important than football. But for football supporters, within the moment of the game, the most important thing to them is football for those 90 minutes. Jim was no different. The fellow supporters of Kilmarnock can draw an affinity with that. They have lost one of theirs and this is a chance to go and have an occasion where we can celebrate his life. That's important."Hibs could be forgiven for having their thoughts on the meeting with Celtic at hampden on 26 May when the Scottish Cup will be the prize. However, Shiels expects the Easter Road side club to be just as determined as his own players to secure a win and bolster their chances of finishing in seventh spot. He said: "There are always permutations of some sort but it's a game of football at the end of it all. Hibs will want to win to get seventh place, as will we. That will make it competitive and I'm expecting it to be a really top game with a lot of good young players on show from Hibernian and Kilmarnock."However, youngster Mark O'Hara hopes Hibs manager Pat Fenlon might be tempted to rest some of his top stars ahead of the Hampden cup final. The young defender said: "Even with their strongest team, hopefully we will be able to win the game. But it would be preferable if they rested a couple of their bigger players. Both teams like to play good attacking football so I think it will be an entertaining game. Hopefully it will be high scoring in our favour if we are able to keep them out and score a few ourselves."
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