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Fans frustrated as National League North match is called off yet again

Fans have been left frustrated after learning that one particular National League North match is called off yet again this season.

Bradford (Park Avenue) was set to take on Boston United on Wednesday night, however less than 24 hours until the game, a statement was issued.

The league encounter was called off due to floodlight failure at Horsfall Stadium, meaning the game will need to be re-arranged yet again.

It was initially set to play out on the 17th of October 2020. However that was postponed after a player tested positive for the coronavirus whilst another squad member had to self-isolate for 14 days after coming in close contact with someone who also had Covid-19.

A statement was released by the Pilgrims which confirmed the positive test while another first-team player, deemed to have been in close contact, had been advised to self-isolate for 14 days.

It also said a third player, who displayed atypical symptoms, had been advised to self-isolate and had been tested.

The statement added: “All the players will only return to training once they are clear of the virus and deemed medically fit. The club has followed strict Covid guidelines and have liaised with the National League over the actions taken.”

Along with the game against Bradford (Park Avenue), they also had to postpone their home game against Guiseley.

The game was originally due to take place this Monday, but was moved to Wednesday as a result of the same floodlight problem.

It would seem the problem is unable to be fixed by the new date and a further revised date will have to be confirmed.

Bradford (Park Avenue) said: “Due to a floodlight issue the National League have decided to postpone the game between Bradford PA and Boston United tomorrow evening.

“The fixture will be re-arranged at the earliest possible time.”

Whilst Boston added that “the postponement has arisen due to continuing uncertainty regarding the floodlights at the Horsfall Stadium.”

Craig Elliott admitted he felt like he is living in ‘crazy times’ after Boston’s match against Guiseley was postponed due to the coronavirus cases and symptoms in the squad – but said the health of everyone involved must be the main priority.

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“These are crazy times,” Elliott said after one player tested positive and others have shown symptoms.

“(Player safety) is the most important thing. We’ve been very good as a club, following protocols and looking after the safety of staff and players and everything.

“It’s at the forefront of our minds and actions as well.

“Obviously, it’s one of them things that happens in large groups. It starts off with one or two and escalates pretty quickly.

“Yesterday morning we still felt we would be playing, but the sensible thing is not to be playing football.

“We’ve tried to manage it with distancing and we’ve done that pretty well on the whole.

“In training and things like that, we’re still socially distancing in the sessions to try to avoid situations like this – but I think it just shows that the virus just takes over.

“You can put precautions in place but it’s difficult to control.

“It’s crazy at the minute; it’s really hard to get your head around.

“At the moment, the main thing is the safety of everyone.

“Ultimately, that’s what we’re looking at doing this morning – making sure we do things right. We’ll worry about the league and FA Cup after that.”

The manager added a few weeks back: “I think, going to bed last night, I was realising I had three players missing. Although disappointing, I had to remind myself that that’s what I’ve said to the players – we have to adapt and be flexible.

“I imagine it will happen to every team in every league this year at some point.

“I keep saying to the players, it’ll be a season like none of us have experienced before.”

Meanwhile, Boston are hoping to play in their new stadium in the near future.

The Pilgrims could end up being the penultimate fixture played at Gainsborough with a move to the new Community Stadium (aka The Quadrant) edging ever closer.

They could look to move into their new home this month, currently scheduled for the 17th of November against Kettering Town.


Wednesday November 2: Bradford (Park Avenue) (A)
Tuesday November 10: Darlington (A)
Saturday November 14: AFC Fylde (A)
Tuesday November 17: Kettering Town (H)
Saturday November 21: Spennymoor Town (H)
Saturday November 28: Blyth Spartans (A)

Fans were left frustrated as the National League North match is called off yet again…

See Also: A second National League North club forced to pull out of the FA Cup

See Also: National League North club withdraw from FA Cup

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