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Jack Ross insists Hibernian do not need to sell Martin Boyle

Jack Ross is confident Hibernian will not have to sell Martin Boyle.

Celtic chief scout Nicky Hammond watched the Australia international play a key role as his side fought back to beat Hamilton on Wednesday night.

The presence of the Hoops spy in the Easter Road stand sparked rumours that Boyle’s old Hibs boss Neil Lennon was preparing a £1.5million raid.

But the Celtic manager has now poured cold water on the links, describing them as “speculation”.

That is good news for Ross after he was given assurances from his Leith superiors that they do not need to cash in on their most prized asset.

Asked if he was confident Hibs could fend off interest in the 26-year-old, Ross said: “Absolutely. There is no desire from me whatsoever to entertain any offers that may potentially come for Martin.

“I think the player is more than happy here and content.

“Everything I’ve heard from the club is that we’re in a good position, so there’s nothing that points to (us having to sell) being the case. However, I’ve been at clubs where that has been the case then change quickly.

“I’m quite relaxed about it because as things stand he’s part of my squad and will continue to be I’d imagine for the rest of the season at least.”

Ross was forced to show his teeth during Wednesday’s clash Accies as his team came in a goal down at half-time.

But they responded to his demand for more as goals from Christian Doidge and Paul Hanlon sealed a 2-1 win.

However, Ross has warned he does not want to have to raise his voice to get a reaction from his players when they head to Motherwell on Saturday.

“I was pleased with the character the boys showed to come back on Wednesday,” he said.

“We had to respond in the second half because if we had played in the same manner as the first half we wouldn’t have got anything from the match as we deserved to be behind at half-time.

“I’ve been happy with the levels the players have given me since I came to the club.

“That was the first time I felt we had dropped below our standards in my time here. It was way below where we need to be at but the response was excellent.

“Motherwell deserve a lot of plaudits this season. But interestingly over the last 10 games we’re only two points behind them in the form table. We’ve reminded the players of that.

“We’re a good side so it’s about taking that confidence but also being aware we need to take that second-half performance against Accies and repeating it for the full game.”