Inverness CT: Scottish Cup hero David Raven hero did not get a medal

David Raven
Raven scored Inverness Caley Thistle's winner in 2015 Scottish Cup semi-final
Scottish Cup semi-final: Hearts v Inverness Caledonian Thistle
Venue: Hampden Park Date: Saturday, 13 April Kick-off: 12:15 BST
Coverage: Watch live on BBC One Scotland, listen to BBC Radio Scotland, and follow live text commentary on the BBC Sport Scotland website

David Raven was instrumental in the greatest achievement of Inverness Caley Thistle's history. Yet the only memento he has to show for it is memories.

The full-back savoured a career high when his goal three minutes from the end of extra time against Celtic in 2015 settled an incident-packed Scottish Cup semi-final.

John Hughes' side went on to lift the trophy, beating Falkirk in the Highland club's first major final. Raven played in every round only to be reduced to the role of spectator in the showpiece - his calf had "literally torn in half" the week before.

And that pain was compounded when the prizes were handed out.

"I knew straight away I had no chance of making it," Raven says. "If I hadn't had that big moment in the semi-final it would have been harder for me.

"We never got a medal because we weren't in the squad for the final - me, Gary Warren, Dean Brill. That soured it more than anything. We complained to the SFA, but it was just one of those things."

Championship side Inverness face Hearts at Hampden on Saturday in their first semi-final since that thriller four years ago. And if anyone in John Robertson's squad is lacking inspiration as they bid to pull off an upset against a Premiership giant, they need only look back to unsung hero Raven's glory moment.

The Liverpudlian's winner was his sole goal in 39 appearances that season, and he only netted five times in more than 150 appearances for the club.

"It's the biggest moment of my career," the 34-year-old says. "Playing for Liverpool, and England (at Under-18, 19 and 20 level), were big highlights but that goal is the best feeling I'll ever have. Wife, kids and all that doesn't even come close in terms of pure joy."

Celtic's fury 'a feather in our cap'

The 3-2 defeat for 10-man Celtic - goalkeeper Craig Gordon was sent off in the 55th minute for bringing down Marley Waktins and conceding a penalty - ended their treble hopes under Ronny Deila. And the final is remembered for an infamous handball incident that infuriated Parkhead players and fans.

Referee Steven McLean, and goalline assistant Alan Muir, weren't the only ones who missed Josh Meekings blatantly blocking Leigh Griffith's goal-bound header with an arm from close range.

"I wasn't aware of it at all," Raven says. "I was five yards away and just thought it had hit him in the face. "And then you see the replay and think 'Jeez, we got away with one.'

"We took it as a feather in our cap that they were so aggrieved about a handball by the minnows of Inverness against the giants of Celtic."

Raven has every confidence his old team can upset Craig Levein's top-flight side and reach their second Scottish Cup Final. Especially if they tap into the fan unrest at Tynecastle in the wake of last weekend's derby defeat to Hibs that was greeted with boos from the Hearts support and led to Levein receiving abuse from fans behind the home dugout.

"There shouldn't be any fear from Inverness," Raven said. "Hearts are there for the taking. They are a big club and everyone expects them to win. I can imagine the boo boys will be out. The longer Inverness stay in the game, the better."

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