STORMS HIT YORK FOR £20K IN LOST TV

The Football League Paper - - BIG INTERVIEW - By Chris Dunlavy

YORK and Fleet­wood will meet again to­mor­row af­ter their play-off first leg at Bootham Cres­cent was called off due to a wa­ter­logged pitch.

Hail and thun­der­storms were fol­lowed by a tor­ren­tial del­uge that left vast pools of stand­ing wa­ter on each touch­line.

With teams of vol­un­teers try­ing to clear the pitch and the Sky cam­eras wait­ing to show the game, ref­eree Carl Boye­son ini­tially de­layed the kick-off by half an hour. But as the rain con­tin­ued to poor, he was left with no choice.

It is a dis­as­trous turn of events for York, who will now miss out on the £20,000 wind­fall from Sky.

“It’s hugely dis­ap­point­ing for the club,” said owner Sophie McGill. “We’re likely to lose rev­enue and it will ob­vi­ously be a great in­con­ve­nience to sup­port­ers.

“But I just want to go on record and thank all the lads who’ve tried so hard to clear the pitch. The vol­un­teers and the grounds­man, the youth team play­ers and com­mu­nity staff – ev­ery­body has tried so hard to get this game on but the weather has just beaten us.”

Ref­eree Carl Boye­son said: “I gave the ground staff 45 min­utes to get the pitch into a po­si­tion where we could get the game played. Un­for­tu­nately dur­ing that time it started to rain again.

“The mid­dle of the pitch was fine. The goal­mouths were fine. It was just the two touch­lines.

“Both man­agers sup­ported my de­ci­sion. This is a play-off semi-fi­nal and you don’t want any­thing put to chance on a pitch like that.”

Fleet­wood had pushed for a Tues­day re­play but, as per York boss Nigel Worthington’s wishes, the Foot­ball League or­dered the game to be played to­mor­row.

“It’s a shame,” he said. “That’s the first game we’ve had post­poned here all sea­son. But there was noth­ing we could do and I’m pleased that the re­play will be Mon­day.”

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