Ely City rise to the challenge and see off Wisbech St Mary to book their place in the Cambs Invitation Cup final

PUBLISHED: 10:22 01 March 2017 | UPDATED: 11:22 01 March 2017

Brady Stone is urging his Ely City players to not dwell on their defeat to Hadleigh United.

Brady Stone is urging his Ely City players to not dwell on their defeat to Hadleigh United.

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Brady Stone is delighted that his Ely City side has risen to the ambitious challenge he set his players last week.

Ash Walter (centre) celebrates opening the scoring in Ely City's 2-1 win over Gorleston on Saturday. PHOTO: Ely City Football ClubAsh Walter (centre) celebrates opening the scoring in Ely City's 2-1 win over Gorleston on Saturday. PHOTO: Ely City Football Club

Last week Stone told his Robins to set their sights on taking all six points from their two Thurlow Nunn Premier Division clashes against Gorleston and Swaffham Town and to book their place in the final of the Cambs Invitation Cup with a win over local rivals, Wisbech St Mary, on Tuesday.

And now, a week later, Ely are one win away from completing that challenge after defying the odds to beat high-flying Gorleston 2-1 last Saturday and have set up an encounter with Cambridge City in the cup final after edging Wisbech St Mary 3-2.

“It’s been a week with two very different performances,” admitted Stone.

“Against Gorleston we were unbelievable. They’re up at the top of the table but we played them off the park for 90 minutes and were fully deserving of the win.

“But on Tuesday, Wisbech St Mary came to us and were right up for it from the first whistle.

“They seemed to want it more but it shows how much we’ve grown as a team when we can play as badly as that but still come away with the win.

“We said last week that if we can end the week with six points and a cup final then it’ll be fantastic and I’m delighted that we’re on course to doing that.”

Stone will take on his former club in the final of the Invitation Cup later this year thanks to goals from Alex Theobald, George Darling and Ash Walter, and despite the Lilywhites playing at a higher level, the Ely boss says his men have a fighting chance at lifting the trophy.

“It’s a cup final so anything can happen,” he said.

“They’re a good side with Robbie Nightingale as manager but at the end of the day, it’s 11 versus 11 so it’s up for grabs.”

Ely will look to complete their three-win mission on Saturday when they welcome basement boys, Swaffham, to the Unwin Ground (3pm).

The Norfolk side are rock bottom of the standings having not won in seven league matches, but Stone is aware of the threat they carry to his side’s recent upturn in form.

“We lost when we went there earlier in the season,” he said.

“That was our worst performance of the season so we need to put that right.”

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