West Yorkshire League, Premier Division
Ripon City 2 East End Park WMC 3 (att 54)
Ripon's Mallorie Park is a ground I've been keen to visit for some time, and for those that haven't been (and care about such things) the clock is ticking, as the club hope to sell the ground and move to a site better-suited to progressing up football's pyramid.
While more modern facilities would certainly benefit the club, grounds like this, with its large seated stand, are becoming a rarity, and it'll be a shame when it's no longer staging football.
Apart from the stand, the remainder of the pitch is surrounded by flat grass standing, with a car park and small clubhouse behind the goal at one end. Nearby houses mean the chances of getting floodlights, necessary for promotion, are probably slim.
One the evidence of my visit there's certainly interest in local sport among Ripon's residents. Crowds of 50 plus are unusual in the West Yorkshire League, and, immediately next door, even more were watching Otley Rugby Union Club's home fixture. A cricket pitch completes Mallorie Park's current status as the city's sporting hub.
A lovely old stand deserves a decent game to be played in front of it, and this match wasn't bad at all, with chances galore at both ends.
Ripon took the lead with a fine first half goal, slightly against the run of play, but Leeds-based East End Park were level before half time.
The second half was all about penalties, three of them, and all scored. First Ripon were awarded a sport kick, soon after the restart. They held their 2-1 lead until the final five minutes, after which two handball decisions, after 85 and 88 minutes, resulted in two converted penalties, and with it three league points, for East End Park.