Arbroath handed Hibs a pre-season shock, beating them 3-2 at Gayfield. Paul Heckingbottom can take positives from the game though, one of them being the return of Martin Boyle.

The Australian played 45 minutes on his return to action. The last time he played for Hibs was during a 1-1 draw with Rangers in December last year.

Boyle’s back. (photo by Alan Rennie/Action Plus via Getty Images)

It’s a welcome boost for the Easter Road side.

Boyle adds something Hibs struggled to find last season

The big thing Hibs lacked last season was pace. It was only really Daryl Horgan who had the capability to turn and run at a defence at pace. Boyle can do that exceptionally.

He’s very hard to deal with when on song. His injury came at the wrong time for both him and the Hibees. He registered four goals and three assists from 17 starts in the Premiership last term. During 17/18, he had registered five goals and three assists from 34 games.

A cruel time to pick up a bad injury for Boyle and Hibs. (Photo by Callum Landells/Getty Images)

Just as he was hitting some of his best league form, his season was cut short. Hopefully he can continue where he left off when the competitive action gets under way. How the Easter Road side have missed his pace and tricky runs.

Heckingbottom seems pleased to have finally seen the winger in action too. He told the Edinburgh Evening News what he thought of Boyle’s progress so far this pre-season.

He said: “He has been training really well. We might have pulled him out of one session for his own good and making sure we keep him in the right direction.”

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