Stirling Albion defender Ross Smith says the Binos executed their game plan to perfection as they held Inverness to a draw in the fourth round of the Scottish Cup.

The holders had travelled to Forthbank confident of taking the first step on the way to retaining their title but Albion put in a superb team performance to repel the Premiership side and secure a replay in the Highlands next Tuesday.

Smith told Stirling News Sport: “The boys were brilliant. We had a game plan and it worked down to a tee so I am really buzzing that we got the draw. We could have nicked it. They had a couple of chances but Chris Smith didn’t have a spectacular save to make. As a team I thought we defended brilliantly and I am just really proud that we got a result and can head up to Inverness for the replay.

“We were saying before the game that because we were playing against the holders, a lot of people would be looking out for this result and because we have got a result and got the chance to go up there, they will be looking for Inverness to go and prove again why they are the holders. Hopefully we can go up there and get another result. You just never know. If we play like we did and sneak a couple of goals it would be brilliant.

“We go into every game confidently. This is a good bunch of confident boys and even though the last couple of weeks have not produced the best results, we know what we have got and we know we can turn it around. Before the game we were thinking that we could win it. The gaffer and Marty gave us that belief and we showed that. We gave them a good game and I think we put them on the back foot a few times, especially in the second half. We gave a good account of ourselves.”

Smith played a starring role on his return to the side and is hoping his performance can help make him a mainstay in the heart of the Binos’ defence.

He said: “I maybe didn’t have the best game a couple of weeks ago but when the gaffer said I was playing I was buzzing. I thought I played well and although I didn’t get to kick the ball a lot, I won my headers well. I did what I had to do. I am just buzzing that the manager put me back in because I wanted to show what I can do and what I can bring to the team. Hopefully I can stay in the side and go on a run.”

Stirling face two long trips north in the space of four days thanks to their cup exploits as they travel to Elgin on League duty this Saturday, but despite the prospect of a second tie with Inverness, Smith says their minds will be fully focused on beating the league leaders and forcing their way back into the League Two promotion mix.

He added: “We know how big the game against Elgin is given that they are at the top of the league. If we can get the three points then that will push us right up there and kick us on for the next few months to hopefully try and win this league. I believe in the boys and I think if we play like we did against Inverness then we can get the result. After that we can concentrate on the Inverness game. I am looking forward to the next couple of games.”