Caley Thistle skipper Gary Warren feared his opportunity to feature in a cup final had passed him by – but he could not have picked a better time to do so.
Inverness’ late victory makes it a week for English defender Warren to cherish, after he became a father for the second time in midweek when his wife Aimee gave birth to their son, Weston.
Warren agonisingly missed Caley Jags’ League Cup final loss to Aberdeen in 2014 and the Scottish Cup final victory over Falkirk the following year through suspension.
The 33-year-old was thrilled to play his part this time around, and he said: “When you don’t play in finals, in your mind you have little regrets and you think to yourself ‘will it come around again?’ and especially at the age I am now. If I was a little bit younger I would maybe back myself a little bit more.
“But to get another chance and another opportunity, it’s what you dream of as a kid when you’re growing up – not just getting to finals but winning finals.
“For myself, I like to be remembered as a winner and to not just actually get to finals, but actually win trophies.
“I’ve had a great week – I’ve been lucky to have a baby boy so the final has capped it all off.
“That’s the icing on the cake. Having a baby boy and then winning a trophy makes it a great week. I’m very thankful.”
The chance to give Caley Jags’ supporters a much-needed boost meant a lot to Warren, and he added: “The league season has not been the best but it’s great to have an opportunity like this, to come away and win a trophy and give the fans something to cheer about.
“It’s been tough in the last couple of years but winning a trophy and seeing quite a few guys turn up in their numbers is pleasing for them.”