6:17:11 PMFalkirk 2-1 Hearts
Falkirk 2-1 Hearts
Midfielder Ruben Palazuelos opened the scoring with a terrific header as the visitors dominated the first half.
Falkirk were a different side after the break, and levelled through Carl Finnigan's close-range finish.
The home side were now on top, and Michael Higdon's fine finish put the home side on course for victory and thrust Hearts deeper into crisis.
Hearts started brightly, and Ibrahim Tall had the first chance of the match, but his fierce volley was blocked by Bairns captain Jack Ross.
Dean Holden then went close for the home side as Falkirk countered, but his short-range effort was saved in style by Hearts keeper Steve Banks.
Hearts were on top in the early part of the game and Calum Elliott released a drive from the edge of the box which flew narrowly past the post.
Andrew Driver made a bursting run through the Falkirk defence, but with only Elliott playing up front for the visitors, there were no takers for his cross.
Tim Krul then pulled off an outstanding save from Lee Wallace's shot after the left-back had dribbled past several Falkirk defenders as Hearts turned the screw.
It was only a matter of time before Hearts took the lead and Palazuelos broke the deadlock when he bulleted home a header from seven yards out from corner.
Lone striker Elliott almost doubled Hearts' advantage with another strong drive which Krul parried away.
Elliott then laid the ball into the path of Kestutis Ivaskevicius, but the Lithuanian's shot went narrowly by the post with Krul beaten.
Falkirk could not be faulted for effort in the first half, but despite enjoying greater possession later in the half, they failed to test Banks in the Hearts goal.
The home side had the first chance of the second period, with a free-kick in a dangerous area. However, Pedro Moutinho blazed the effort well over the bar.
John Hughes' half-time team talk had obviously had an effect as Falkirk were enjoying their best period of the game, and Banks was finally forced into a save when substitute Russell Latapy fired in a drive from distance, which the Hearts keeper saved comfortably.
Falkirk were increasing the pressure on the Hearts rearguard, and Carl Finnigan equalised for the Bairns when he hammered the ball home froma range of four yards from Moutinho's corner.
Michael Higdon then turned the game on its head moments later, with a terrific turn and shot from Latapy's set-up play to put the home side ahead.
Higdon went close to adding insult to injury for Hearts with another strong shot close to the death, which Banks did well to turn round the post.Michal Pospisil almost salvaged a point for Hearts, but his last-minute drive flew wide of Krul's post just before the full-time whistle.
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