A second-half equaliser from Tony Watt snatched a 1-1 draw for Motherwell as Hibernian’s frustrating search for victories continues.
Kevin Nisbet’s opener in the 33rd minute sent Hibs on their way to what they hoped would be a second three points in three games.
But Watt restored parity on the hour mark and left the Easter Road side with just one win from their last eight league outings
Josh Campbell struck the crossbar late on, but Motherwell defended stoutly to cling on for a point in front of 1,300 NHS employees invited by Hibs.
With both teams struggling for supremacy, they traded openings in the initial exchanges.
Paul McGinn produced a stunning last-ditch challenge to prevent Kevin Van Veen from an almost certain opener for Motherwell five minutes in, and six minutes later Nisbet’s glancing header from a Chris Cadden cross was deflected across goal and wide.
Then, with 24 minutes gone, Motherwell passed up a gilt-edged opportunity to make the breakthrough.
They poured forward on a lightning-quick counter-attack that Hibs looked to have covered. But McGinn was woefully short with a miscued pass back, leaving Dean Cornelius one-on-one with Matt Macey.
It was the Hibs goalkeeper who won the duel, repelling Cornelius’ low shot with his outstretched leg.
Macey then awkwardly beat away a Watt drive before the Motherwell striker skied his header over from Van Veen’s resulting cross.
Watt was again in the thick of the action moments later when he shot too straight to trouble Macey.
And, just as it looked as if the Steelmen had a grip on the game, Hibs scored.
Youngster Campbell, fresh from penning a new four-year contract this week, curled in a magnificent left-foot cross from the right and Nisbet flashed a first-time volley beyond the exposed Liam Kelly.
Van Veen might have done better in the visitors’ search for a leveller but lifted his shot across goal and wide from a tight angle after brushing off Ryan Porteous.
Three minutes after the restart, the Hibs defender was inches away from converting a low Joe Newell cross for a second before the Fir Park side dug out a superb equaliser.
The home side failed to clear their lines and a loose ball fell to Watt at the edge of the box.
The in-form striker showed great confidence to spear a magnificent low shot in off Macey’s right-hand post for a ninth cinch Premiership goal.
Hibs scored twice late on to snatch victory against St Johnstone seven days previously and they pushed hard for a winner in the closing stages.
Stephen O’Donnell cleared Campbell’s shot off the line in the 66th minute before the youngster came closest 12 minutes from time.
Nisbet’s low effort was hacked away in front of goal and Campbell hammered off the crossbar as Hibs recycled possession.
Nisbet had the clearest opportunity as the clock ticked down, but he scuffed his shot from 12 yards out and Kelly clung on to ensure the Fir Park men left with a point.
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