IT is hard to believe that any positive vibes could emerge from York Wasps during such a dismal season.

But how encouraging to hear exactly that from chief executive Ann Garvey today.

While results on the field are what the public sees, results off the field are equally important, especially at a club like York where, in the past, financial failings have left them on the brink of extinction.

Garvey quite rightly put the finances at the top of her list and next season the Wasps should begin to bear the fruits of her efforts.

They will have very little News Corporation cash to count on next term and, had they been in financial dire straits, they would once again have been facing a season of unpaid wages and threats from creditors.

But instead they can concentrate their efforts on building a team to restore some pride to the ranks.

At times this year it has been dreadful to watch and most fans are probably counting down the days to the end of the season.

But surely one year of disappointment is a small price to pay for the long-term future of York Wasps.

No decision has yet been made on the York chairmanship following the death of Trevor Cox.

Ann Garvey said there was no legal requirement for them to have a chairman and at the moment they were content to make decisions as a board.

She said they were considering various suggestions and a decision would be made during the close season, when the new coach would also be confirmed.

SAD farewells and warm welcomes in a week of contrasting fortunes for the Wasps.

Experienced dual code centre Simon Irving is sure to provide some much needed solidity in the flagging back line following his move from Huddersfield RU.

But his arrival has been tempered by the departure of hooker-cum-scrum-half Gareth Dobson who has returned to Castleford.

Dobson has been one of the few consistent shining lights in a disappointing season for York and he will be greatly missed.

His switch from hooker to scrum-half was an inspired move by coach Garry Atkins but Dobson is the first to admit he will always be more at home in the number nine shirt.

Hopefully he will get the chance to prove that in Super League - he certainly deserves it.

TWO former York team-mates were going head to head in the BNFL National Cup final this afternoon.

Ideal Isberg scrum-half Terry Smirk and his Skirlaugh counterpart Colin Brown played together at York in the 1996 season.

ROB Lee seems to be finding his form again now that he has returned to Hull FC.

York-born Lee never lived up to his potential after joining the Wasps from Hull in the close season.

He was unable to settle at Huntington Stadium but is now back on the right track at the Boulevard.

Playing in the centre, he helped Hull Alliance to a 22-18 victory over Wigan Alliance last week by setting up the last two tries, including the match winner.

Lee's decision to go back to Hull to play A-team football could prove to be a well-judged one by the youngster.

Hull will be struggling for English players when they have to release the bulk of their Australians at the end of this year so, if he can maintain a high standard, he could well be in contention for a first team place next season.

CONTRASTING birthdays for a couple of York players last Wednesday.

While Dean Thomas celebrated his 34th with his first try for the Wasps in nearly five years, new signing Michael Smith spent his 24th stuck in a New Zealand airport hoping to catch a flight to England.

Even worse, it was all to no avail as no cancellations became available. Bet that was some party.

The Wasps are running a supporters' bus to tomorrow's match at Sheffield Eagles. It leaves Huntington Stadium at noon, with various pick-up points, cost £10.

Contact Ann Garvey on 01759 380298 for details.