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Hearts will shrug off cup final defeat and focus on promotion – Steven Naismith

Steven Naismith File Photo
(Image credit: Jeff Holmes)

Steven Naismith insists Hearts will shrug off their William Hill Scottish Cup final disappointment to refocus on a return to the Premiership.

The Championship leaders lost 4-3 in a penalty shootout to Celtic at Hampden Park on Sunday after coming back from 2-0 down at half-time to draw level then 3-2 down at half time in extra-time to draw 3-3.

Jambos goalkeeper Craig Gordon saved the first penalty of the shootout when he thwarted former team-mate Ryan Christie, but Hoops stopper Conor Hazard made saves from Stephen Kingsley and Craig Wighton to leave Kristoffer Ajer to slot in the winning spot-kick to secure Celtic the quadruple domestic treble.

Hearts will now turn their attention to the visit of Ayr United on Saturday.

Naismith, the Gorgie club’s captain, said: “I don’t think we will be feeling sorry for ourselves.

“I don’t think that has entered anybody’s mind. It was sheer disappointment because we were so close.

“At one point you are two penalties way. That is what is hurting, that we were that close to winning a Scottish Cup.

“It is hard work to get to a final, let alone win them. We put ourselves in some great situations and probably couldn’t ask any more from the boys.

“We will be disappointed for a few days but I can’t see it lingering on after that.

“We are fully focused in terms of what we need to do to this season to get back to the Premiership.”