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SWPL Premier washout


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Are games being called off too easily/coveniently (Some 24 hours before) in a League of a high stature of well organisation?

The weather forecast stated on Friday that by mid afternoon the wind would have eased under clearing skies.

Yesterday important matches were played and an extra effort must have been made by the clubs in question-Truro City, F.A.Vase at Tavistock and surprisingly Plymouth Parkway who have had a number of previous rained off postponements.

Looking through the eyes of club groundsmen (sorry Mark at FT) I wouldn't have written this.

Also a well done to the officials of Hayle,Godolphin and St.Austell who did stage their match and I do appreciate some grounds have a hopeless chance of playing but it makes me question the entire SWPL Premier division.

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Its a very fair comment Mike, but not one with a straight answer.

We were fortunate to not have a home fixture yesterday, but if we had would have left a difficult decision to make.

We have three volunteer groundsman (all retired gents :c: ), who put in a fair few hours at The Mill each week. This week, due to the weather, they have not been able to put right the damage from last Saturday's game.

If a game had been played you then ask those folks to treble their own time to put right even more damage.

You also run the risk of ruining a good surface for months, for the sake of one game, especially as their is plenty of capacity in the fixture list to reschedule.

I for one, fully understand early decisions taken this weekend to call off matches.

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Let's face it, most of us bend over backwards to get these games on for any number of reasons and any skulduggery is more likely lower down the system. We have a most efficient and discerning League Secretary to answer to and he does ensure that the enforcement of rules is tempered with a degree of common sense and consideration to all involved.Bear in mind also, that the question of Spectator safety may well come into the equation.

We were unlucky in having a Friday fixture when Saturday might have been a different matter, just luck of the draw.

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I was at Tavistock in their game against Brockenhurst.

A pitch inspection was carried out at 9.00 am and the information that was passed to me was that the pitch was looking in very good condition, given the weather the region had received within the last few days.

When I got there at 1.15 pm, albeit there had been more rain, the pitch still looked in very good condition.

Yes it was soft underfoot and a little squelchy in isolated places however, the groundsman continued working on the pitch right up to kick-off.

After the game, yes you could see that a game had been played on it but there was no serious damage to the pitch.

On a separate point, I would just like to say what a fantastic job Tavistock are doing with their club. They've certainly created a Wow factor! The recent improvements carried out at the Club are very impressive and will make some clubs question their own progress.

Playing a small part in the day was very special and reminded me of the positives of being an official.

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The question I have is this:

"Why allow clubs to postpone a day early based on the weather forecast when we know that weather forecasts are invariably wrong?"

As it happened, less wind blew and less rain fell than expected. I was out and about during the afternoon (not at football :angry2: ) and the ground certainly was not wet underfoot.

Sorry, but I just don't see the value in postponing on the Friday and I feel that some matches could have been played which were actually postponed.

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As you so rightly say Mike were you a groundsman, you probably wouldn't have posted. A lot of grounds that called off yesterday were probably low lying. With the amount of moisture thrown at them this last three weeks, unless they really top class they wouldn't have had a chance. We managed to get two games played at Hayle yesterday, but I spent 4 hours this morning repairing the main pitch and can't look at the second pitch until tomorrow. I would suggest that nearly all groundsmen in Cornwall are, like me, retired gents who volunteer, and also work with the minimum of mechanical tools for help. So at the back of your mind each Saturday is how long and how much effort, is it going to take me to get this pitch playable. Not just playable, but presentable as well, all groundsmen take a great deal of pride in how their pitches look and play. As I say we at Hayle are quite lucky, I have the backing of a sensible committee, who within reason, will let me spend money on the pitches, this shows in the fact that I can only recall losing two Saturdays over the last ten years. Also when the pitch was constructed, a dear old gent ,Bill Teague, who was by trade a seedsman ,clearly laid out a regime that we had to adhere to, and by god he was right. So I don't really believe there was any skulduggery yesterday, there are grounds that just will not take any amount of rain, we can all probably name them, and others will take as much as you can throw at them. So folks when you watch your next game and the ball bounces and rolls true, just remember the daft sod who has spent the last 10 hours getting it right

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Are games being called off too easily/coveniently (Some 24 hours before) in a League of a high stature of well organisation?

The weather forecast stated on Friday that by mid afternoon the wind would have eased under clearing skies.

Is it not the match referee that calls the game off or what ever person has been appointed by the league to do the pitch inspection?

As for the weather forecast - if the pitch is waterlogged theres not alot you can do about it. Players safety will be a factor as well.

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Clubs and refs seem to be in a no win situation with this one.

Do you remember two seasons ago when the referee allowed a match to go ahead at Bodieve Park one evening (I can't remember who Wadebridge played)?

The pitch was very wet , cut up very badly, and needed a lot of hard work to get it playable again. After that the ref was criticised for starting the game. So damned if you do and damned if you don't.

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