The Scottish FA were forced into a humbling climbdown over Inverness CT star James Keatings’ ridiculous suspension for the Challenge Cup final, admitting they were having to reconvene the disciplinary tribunal called to review it, and the latest farce must surely prompt serious change at Hampden.

Keatings’ picked up a second booking after a challenge from Rangers Colts’ midfielder sent the veteran star to the deck and referee Greg Aitken didn’t hesitate to dismiss him for simulation after earlier being booked.

A three-man disciplinary panel reviewed the footage and somehow came to the conclusion the second booking was merited – before the SFA today admitted in a lengthy statement that they “did not undertake their obligations with respect to the consideration of all the available evidence.”

Keatings could now find himself getting to represent his side in the Challenge Cup final when they take on Raith Rovers next month, but the fact it has even got to this stage is beyond ridicule.

Inverness CT boss John Robertson, unsurprisingly had little to say as news broke of the SFA’s climbdown – with the Hearts legend undertaking media duties at Easter Road for Hibs v Livingston.

 (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

The Scottish FA’s three-man panel should have immediately thrown out the original decision and overturned Keatings’ ban – and there will now be some fans questioning other decisions made under the Fast Track process.

With the governing body being as inept as they are, you wouldn’t bet against them upholding Keatings’ ban once again but the ramifications from this absolute shambles should have some high-reaching effects at Hampden.

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