Ripon City rob Bardsey’s cup dream

NARG 1311021AM Ripon City V Bardsey. (1311021AM)
NARG 1311021AM Ripon City V Bardsey. (1311021AM)
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Ripon City sent West Yorkshire League champions Bardsey crashing out of the County Cup to set up an enticing tie against rivals Boroughbridge.

Defender Rob Mortimer’s “surprise” extra-time goal knocked the stuffing out of Bardsey as City progressed 3-2 at Mallorie Park on Saturday.

Adam Robinson and Joe Knowlson had earlier put City 2-0 up, before the reigning league winners fought back to force extra-time.

The win continued City’s cup stranglehold over West Yorkshire giants Bardsey after knocking the visitors out of the League Cup semi-final last campaign.

With rivals Boroughbridge beating Ventus Yeadon Celtic 6-2, the rival teams set up the first West Riding County Cup contest between them.

“It’s certainly going to be a massive occasion,” said City secretary Andrew Young.

“It will highlight how strong local football is in the area. It’s the game everyone wanted.”

Manager Charlie Brown was away for the Bardsey tie, leaving assistant Alistair Hogg to lead the team from in goal.

The veteran stopper produced several fine saves in treacherous conditions to deny the under-strength visitors.

“We defended for our lives,” added Young.

“We dug deep. Everyone pulled in. We were the better team in the first-half of extra-time, and then Rob Mortimer’s strike caught everyone by surprise.”

Ninth-placed City are on the road on Saturday as Brown’s boys head to league newcomers Shelley.

The hosts have had a stuttering start since joining the Premier division, losing seven of their 13 matches. And Young said City travelled into the clash full of confidence.

He said: “We know it’s going to be a tough match. We are taking nothing for granted but all the lads are confident at the moment.

“It will be a new experience for both teams but we will treat it as we treat every other game.”

City boss Brown almost has a full squad at his disposal, butTom Sowerby, James Mason and Simon English require late fitness tests.

City have also had an inconsistent start to their league season but remain three points below East End Park in fifth with two games in hand.

“We want to get a couple of back to back league victories,” added Young. “We finished fifth last year. That’s what we are aiming for again.”