MORTON legend Allan McGraw has told of his shock and sadness after former assistant manager Peter Cormack was diagnosed with dementia.

The man known as Mr Morton brought his former Hibs team-mate to Cappielow as his number two during the mid-90s and the pair went on to produce the best Ton side of the modern era.

Filled with stars such as Derek McInnes, Derek Lilley, Alan Mahood and 'Flying Finns' Janne Lindberg and Marko Rajamaki, the management duo took the club to a league title and then within a whisker of promotion to the top flight in 1996.

Mr Cormack - whose son Peter junior also played for the club from 1994-99 - returned to Cappielow in 2001 as manager following Douglas Rae's rescue takeover.

He left the job early the following year, with his wife saying this week that she started to notice changes in her husband around this time.

Morton legend Allan, 80, says he was upset to hear about his friend's illness.

Mr McGraw told the Tele: "I was so sad to hear his news.

"We had great times together at Morton and Hibs.

"I have not seen Peter much over the last couple of years.

"I met him at a friend's funeral about a year ago and I realised then that he was not well.

"I started to realise something was wrong because Peter was missing from functions you would normally expect him to be at.

"My heart goes out to Peter and his wife."

Former Scotland star Peter had a glorious footballing career playing for Liverpool during the Bill Shankly heyday, starring alongside the the likes of Kevin Keegan, winning two league titles and two UEFA Cups.

He then found himself at Hibs under Bill's brother Bob and played at Easter Road at the same time as George Best.

It was there that he met Allan.

Mr McGraw said: "He was a first class player.

"He brought all that experience and professionalism to Morton and was great to have by your side.

"The players, especially the young ones, really benefited from working with him.

"We had great times, probably the biggest highlight was winning promotion to the First Division in 1995."

Morton legend Allan has watched many of his peers suffer the same fate as Peter, with a recent Glasgow University study establishing the risks of dementia in former professional footballers.

The publicity on the research prompted Peter, 73, and his wife Marion, 69, and their family to speak out in the hope the authorities will offer more support.

Supporting their calls, Allan added: "It was the old ball, it was so hard and I have the scars myself to prove it.

"You wonder why some of us were lucky and others not so much.

"I think heading the ball is part and parcel of the game and you don't want to lose that but maybe we should look at protection.

"I do think the new lighter balls make a difference though."