City and Bridge set up final date

hsb  Boroughbridge v Ripon City.  110423M2a.
hsb Boroughbridge v Ripon City. 110423M2a.

Ripon City and Boroughbridge can look forward to a season ending Whitworth Cup date after both booked their final places with impressive wins at the weekend (2.30pm).

But first the pair will square up this Saturday in a bumper League Cup quarter-final at Ripon.

City thrashed Pannal Sports 5-1 to earn their place in the final and will be joined at Harrogate Town’s CNG Stadium by rivals ‘Bridge after who beat Beckwithshaw Saints 3-1.

And the prospect of a derby in the final has excited both City manager Paul Vincent and ‘Bridge boss Daz Ekin.

Ekin said: “It is going to be a great occasion with a decent crowd at Harrogate.

“They beat us in the final 5-1 last year and we didn’t do ourselves justice. We will be ready for them. But it’s a long way off. It’s definitely on the back burner for both of us.”

Vincent added: “Ripon and Boroughbridge have been the best teams in the cup this season and that shows.

“Our 5-1 win last year is irrelevant. We are going to have to turn up and do it again.

“We know it is not going to be an easy game.

“It gives the lads the incentive to carry on and they will have to put performances in. I am looking for a top five finish and some silverware.”

Five different goalscorers hit the target for Vincent’s men against Pannal Sports on Saturday.

Full-back Matt McGlinchey grabbed the opener with a curling shot from distance before Duncan Terry doubled the advantage before half-time.

Simon English added a third from a corner and Pa Cisse struck against his old club as City continued to dominate after the break.

Tom Leeming capped a fine display with the fifth and despite Sports scoring a penalty, conceded by a Vincent handball, City romped into the final.

The boss praised the professional job his side put in against “potential banana skin” opponents.

Vincent said: “Once again their attitude and discipline was excellent and they concentrated on getting the job done. We defended well and attacked quickly.”

‘Bridge were equally impressive as they dismantled Harrogate and District League high fliers Saints, with goals from Matt Thompson (two) and Jimmy Tucknott.

Ekin said: “It was a very workmanlike performance. Beckwithshaw were a good side with good players and we didn’t underestimate them.”

“Matt Thompson’s taken on the mantle very well since Ben Jones got injured. We needed someone to stand up to the plate and he’s been scoring nearly every game.”

City battered ‘Bridge 4-1 at home in the only West Yorkshire Premier meeting between the two this season.

The Ripon boss has welcomed a clean bill of health for his squad and former ‘Bridge star Ben Clayton is among the players returning from being cup-tied.

Ekin said his squad was at 80 per cent after a spate of injuries but he hopes Ben Mudd, Ian O’Hare and Mark Burniston will be fit.

Both managers said they hoped the community would come out in force to support their sides when they battle at the weekend.

Ahead of Saturday’s clash, Ekin said: “It is a massive game, like a cup final.

“Everyone’s going to be up for it. I hope both teams don’t cancel each other out and the people who come are provided with a good match.

“We’ve been in the semi over the last two seasons and we probably have the better cup experience. But they will have a very patriotic crowd behind them.

“It will be nice for a game of that standard to have a couple of hundred people there.”

Vincent added: “It is great for the local community and I am sure there will be a great crowd there.”

“The players shouldn’t need motivating. Both teams want the bragging rights.

“It is an exciting prospect for the game and we won’t take anything for granted.”