The Hampton sec­re­tary gets two-year ban

FOOT­BALL: Sun­day Morn­ing League may strip team of the Di­vi­sion Two ti­tle

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Football - by MARK PLUM­MER

THE peo­ple at the cen­tre of one of the biggest con­tro­ver­sies to rock lo­cal foot­ball in years have been handed lengthy bans – while their club has been heav­ily fined.

Hampton Sports reg­u­larly fielded player Mark Ward last sea­son in both Satur­day and Sun­day foot­ball even though he was un­der a sine die sus­pen­sion stretch­ing back to 2007 for non-pay­ment of debts fol­low­ing the col­lapse of an­other lo­cal club.

He reg­is­tered and played for Hampton un­der the name of Mar­cus Ward – some­thing that only came to light to­wards the end of the cam­paign af­ter he had helped the club’s Satur­day re­serve team win the PFA Mi­nor Cup and played a prom­i­nent role in their Sun­day side’s Di­vi­sion Two ti­tle suc­cess in the Hereward Teamwear & Tro­phies Peter­bor­ough Sun­day Morn­ing League.

Hampton sec­re­tary Lee Brit­ton re­ceived the stiffest pun­ish­ment of all from the Hunts FA with a twoyear sus­pen­sion. He can­not take any fur­ther part in the game un­til July 2012.

Dis­ci­plinary find­ings re­vealed Brit­ton ‘know­ingly reg­is­tered Mark Ward as Mar­cus Ward and al­lowed the player to play for the club’.

Ward has been banned for 380 days, which rules him out of the whole of next sea­son. He has been found guilty of bring­ing the game into dis­re­pute.

Hampton Sports have been fined £100 af­ter be­ing charged with two counts of mis­con­duct. It con­cerns the fact they al­lowed Ward to reg­is­ter and play for the club on both Satur­days and Sun­days.

Hampton’s in­volve­ment in the PFA Sun­day Morn­ing Ju­nior Cup and the McCain Cup meant the fi­nals of those com­pe­ti­tions could not take place and were de­clared void.

Now the Peter­bor­ough Sun­day Morn­ing League are set to take their own ac­tion.

The league con­firmed at their an­nual meet­ing at the Park­way Club yes­ter­day morn­ing that they have charged Hampton Sports, Brit­ton and Ward with the same of­fences.

The league’s own dis­ci­plinary panel is set to sit in the next few days to de­cide whether Hampton should be stripped of the Di­vi­sion Two ti­tle.

Hampton have pro­vi­sion­ally been pro­moted into Di­vi­sion One for next sea­son, but that is sub­ject to change.

League chair­man Fred John­son told the meet­ing: “The Hampton Sports sit­u­a­tion has been well doc­u­mented. They have now been charged and pun­ished by the Hunts FA. As a league we had to sit on our hands un­til the county had taken the ac­tion they deemed ap­pro­pri­ate.

“Now that has hap­pened we have charged the club and the rel­e­vant peo­ple with the same of­fences. It could well af­fect the fi­nal stand­ings in Di­vi­sion Two from last sea­son.”

Hampton are likely to be docked points for ev­ery fix­ture in which Ward played with run­ners-up Gun­thorpe Hot­spur likely to be be­lat­edly crowned cham­pi­ons.

The league have lost one of their top teams af­ter back-to-back Hunts Sun­day Cup win­ners Fratelli failed in a bid to sur­vive.

An 11th hour plea for a new man­ager was un­suc­cess­ful and the club, who led the Premier Di­vi­sion ta­ble for much of last sea­son, have folded af­ter a decade. Di­vi­sion Three team Boro­cars Citroen have also gone.

Many of last sea­son’s Fratelli play­ers are un­der­stood to be mov­ing to a new-look SSPIO team in the Premier Di­vi­sion.

For­mer SSPIO player-boss Steve Starkey has launched a new side – Coco’s – who will also play in the top-flight.

Coco’s were one of five new teams to be voted in yes­ter­day morn­ing. Cas­tor & Ailsworth and King’s Cliffe will join Di­vi­sion Two while AFC Bret­ton and Artemis go into the bot­tom sec­tion.

Artemis have spent sev­eral sea­sons play­ing in the Peter­bor­ough Sun­day Af­ter­noon League.

Play­ers at­tached to the Lord Burgh­ley and FC Bauer clubs that folded dur­ing last sea­son are sus­pended from Peter­bor­ough Sun­day Morn­ing League ac­tion due to a non-pay­ment of debts.

The league will be op­er­at­ing a new web­site ahead of next sea­son.

The www.psmfl.org site will use the same frame­work as the well­re­ceived site al­ready be­ing used by the ChromaSport & Tro­phies Peter­bor­ough & District League, www.pdfl.org It means clubs can now reg­is­ter their play­ers on­line.

The Peter­bor­ough Sun­day Af­ter­noon League – www.psafl.org – and the Peter­bor­ough Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion – www.pe­ter­bor­oughfa.org – will also be us­ing the same model.

It was cre­ated by lo­cal foot­ball’s an­swer to Bill Gates - Nether­ton goal­keeper and IT wizard Gareth Ex­ton.

RE­SULTS sec­re­tary John Prince is set to be a busy boy – he’s also taken on the reg­is­tra­tion sec­re­tary role va­cated by the res­ig­na­tion of Richard Line to­wards the end of last sea­son.

That is the only change to a com­mit­tee that would wel­come the ar­rival of some new blood.

Chair­man Fred John­son said: “The peo­ple on the com­mit­tee do a ter­rific job and have helped en­sure the league is once again alive and kick­ing, both on and off the pitch.

“But we are al­ways look­ing for new peo­ple with new ideas to come on board. We would love to hear from any­one who has three or four hours a month to spare and who would be in­ter­ested.”

Any­one in­ter­ested in join­ing the league com­mit­tee can con­tact Fred on 01733 223074.

COM­MIT­TEE MAN OF THE YEAR: Shirley Ben­nett (wife of the late Dave Ben­nett) presents the award to chair­man and sec­re­tary Fred John­son for a third suc­ces­sive year.

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