Craig Wighton hat-trick keeps Hearts rolling in Betfred Cup – FourFourTwo

Craig Wighton scored a hat-trick as Hearts beat Raith Rovers 3-1 to make it three wins from three in the Betfred Cup.

Wighton netted penalties at either end of the first half and scored an excellent late solo effort after Manny Duku had brought Rovers back into the game.

Kyle Benedictus was extremely harshly penalised for handball in the second minute to allow Wighton to net, the ball appearing to hit his back. But the defender had little complaint about the second spot-kick after pulling the goalscorer down with his hand after slipping.

Duku powered a shot into the near top corner after running on to Dylan Tait’s through-ball and Raith claimed strongly for a penalty for handball against Stephen Kingsley as they battled for an equaliser at Tynecastle.

But Wighton settled the game on the counter-attack with three minutes left as he ran from his own half, nutmegged Benedictus and drilled the ball into the corner.

Inverness cannot catch Hearts in Group A after being held to a goalless home draw by Cowdenbeath. Caley Thistle earned a bonus point with a 4-2 shoot-out win.

Ayr went top of Group F after Michael Moffat’s 24th-minute penalty gave them a 1-0 win over Annan but the main drama was further down the coast at Stranraer where Albion Rovers won 15-14 on penalties after a 2-2 draw.

Connor McManus thought he had done his job when he netted Stranraer’s fourth spot-kick of the shoot-out but his turn came round again and he was
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