The loss of a number of first team players has been blamed for Ripon City’s decision to withdraw their successful reserve team from the West Yorkshire League.
James McDaid, Darren Simpson, Duncan Terry and Ben Jones have all swapped red for blue and moved to Boroughbridge in the last 12 months, leaving Ripon crippled for bodies.
City’s first team have consequently struggled for form at the start of the season and lie bottom of Division One with only two points from seven games.
The lack of players has forced the club to pull the reserves out of Alliance Division One to prevent amassing hefty fines from the West Riding FA.
City’s second string earned promotion from Alliance Two last year after finishing second behind Horbury Town Reserves.
Danny Metcalfe agreed to take charge of the team for the 2015/16 campaign but flagging availability has meant Ripon’s second team have lost all five of their matches.
First team manager Mick Baldwin was hopeful the club would resurrect the second team next season, with a link-up with Ripon City Panthers’ junior set-up.
He said: “We have had to pull the team out as we just couldn’t get a team out. It’s a great shame.
We will look to restart again next season. This season, it’s a case of consolidating.
“It’s not an ideal situation but it’s better than not getting a team out each week and incurring fines.
“The loss of first team players has had a big effect. We have had to draw from the second team into the first team.”