DEFENSIVE stalwart David McGurk is revelling in his burgeoning partnership with York City skipper Chris Smith.

The Minstermen have kept two clean sheets in the three games since Smith was paired with McGurk at the heart of the defence.

Smith, who re-signed for City on loan from Mansfield Town, made his debut in the 2-0 FA Cup win over Kidderminster.

A 2-1 Blue Square Bet Premier defeat at Forest Green followed that tie, but McGurk and Smith then both starred in the impressive 0-0 Cup draw at Rotherham.

The duo will, however, be split up for Sunday’s league meeting with Wrexham at Bootham Crescent as Smith is serving a one-match suspension.

A yellow card at Don Valley Stadium last weekend took Smith to five for the season, having been booked in Mansfield’s games against Fleetwood, Luton, Gateshead and Rushden.

“It’s a shame he’s suspended,” said McGurk. “Chris and I have got a good understanding going already.

“We’ve got two clean sheets in the three games we’ve played together, so something is going right. We both read the game well and that helps because neither of us are what you would call big, commanding centre-backs.

“I have had a few central defensive partners since I came to the club, but I just keep doing my job and it’s going well with Chris.”

Following hot on the heels of the Wrexham fixture is the FA Cup replay against the Millers at Bootham Crescent on Wednesday.

McGurk is hoping for a repeat performance on and off the field, after 1,100 Minstermen fans created a superb atmosphere at Don Valley Stadium.

“We had a brilliant following and it gives you a massive boost,” said the 28-year-old centre-back.

“When you come out and see support like we had at Rotherham, you really want to do it for them.

“It was brilliant.”