Dunfermline Athletic

Hamish French

Hamish French

Born: 07/02/64
Nationality:
Scottish
Previous Clubs:
Keith, Dundee United, Dunfermline, Alloa, Cowdenbeath
Signed:
23/10/91

Hamish French was born on 7th February 1964 in Aberdeen and as a youngster he went on to support his hometown team.

Hamish was late into the professional game having been signed by Jim McLean for Dundee United from Highland League side Keith on 18th June 1987.He was 23 years old at the time but apparently United had been after him for some time.Hamish had earlier declined the chance to play full-time in order to finish his engineering apprenticeship.

He made his debut at Ibrox against Rangers on 8th August 1987, but on the Monday following broke his leg in training.His early days at Tannadice were plagued by injury but he did play in the 1991 Scottish Cup Final that Dundee United lost to Motherwell.Hamish actually had the ball in the net, only to be called offside!

In what was undoubtedly his best piece of work as Pars manager, Jocky Scott brought him to Dunfermline on 23rd October 1991 for a fee of £150,000.  Over the next nine seasons, Hamish was a regular in the Pars side under a succession of different managers. He was versatile so despite originally being signed as a striker was more inclined to play in midfield in his later years.Hamish was very popular with the fans at Dunfermline, largely because of his non-stop effort for 90 minutes.Even in his later years his level of fitness was phenomenal!

His final Dunfermline appearance was at Cappielow against Morton on 6th May 2000.By that time he had chalked up 300 appearances for Dunfermline in league and cup games, scoring a total of 64 goals.  The following season, Hamish took up a youth coaching post with Dunfermline but managed to combine that with a playing career with Alloa Athletic then later with Cowdenbeath.

On 28th September 2002, Hamish suffered a double leg fracture in Cowdenbeath's match with Berwick Rangers, and that effectively ended his playing career.One year on from that terrible injury though, Hamish recovered and was appointed Community Manager at Dunfermline.  For season 2005-06 he took on more increased responsibility under Jim Leishman as a member of the senior coaching team at East End Park.  Has had tremendous success bringing on the Under 19s.

His loyalty to the Pars over a near 20 year period is alone a good enough reason for awarding Hamish the accolade of induction into the Dunfermline Athletic Hall of Fame in 2011.  But it is all the more deserved in the eyes of those who had the privilege to watch a player whose energy and inselfish running did as much as anyone to bring Premier League football back to Dunfermline in the 1990s.



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