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National League North fixture abandoned in the 89th minute

One particular National League North fixture ended up having to be abandoned in the 89th minute due to injury on Tuesday night.

Darlington’s match against Boston United was halted before the referee chose to call it a day after a serious injury was suffered to former Bolton Wanderers defender Nicky Hunt.

The 37-year-old laid on the pitch at Blackwell Meadows after being knocked unconscious and needed lengthy treatment for a head injury.

He was taken to hospital by ambulance at around 23:00 GMT after being treated on the pitch for more than an hour.

Darlington revealed an update on the condition of the defender.

Credit: Darlo Radio

It read: Following an incident on the field near the end of the match, Nicky was left unconscious and needed lengthy treatment for a head injury from the physios of both clubs and medical staff.

He was taken to hospital at 11pm by ambulance.

We would like to thank the excellent care and prompt action which was taken by the physios of both clubs, and the Darlington FC safety staff and stewards.

Our thoughts are with Nicky and his family.

We will update everybody when we can.


The Quakers’ opposition, Boston United, said: Darlington defender Nicky Hunt has been stretchered from the pitch by ambulance crew at 11.00pm. Best wishes to him for a speedy recovery.

Boston also said in a statement via their club website: Boston United’s National League North trip to Darlington was abandoned in the closing stages on Tuesday evening.

A serious-looking injury to home defender Nicky Hunt prompted referee Adam Williamson to abandon the encounter at Blackwell Meadows which United led 2-0.

Jordan Burrow’s eighth minute header and Fraser Preston’s deflected 87th minute strike had the Pilgrims on course for a deserved away win until Hunt’s injury curtailed matters.


A further statement, issued by Darlington on Wednesday morning, read: We are pleased to inform everyone that following a scan on his head and neck at North Tees Hospital early this morning, Nicky has been given the all-clear. He was released from hospital at around 5am, and he returned home to rest with his family.

Once again, we would like to thank the physios from both Darlington and

@bostonunited who gave Nicky so much care and attention on the field, their professionalism prevented the situation from getting even worse, and also to the medical staff for their attention.
We would also like to thank everyone from across the football spectrum for sending their best wishes to Nicky.

Hunt made a total of 127 appearances for Bolton Wanderers in the top flight and also had spells with Birmingham, Derby and Bristol City.

Here he is talking about eyeing up promotion with Darlington for the 2020/21 season…


2001–2010 – Bolton Wanderers – 128 apps (1 goal)
2008 → Birmingham City (loan) – 11 apps (0 goals)
2010 → Derby County (loan) – 21 apps (0 goals)
2010–2012 – Bristol City – 7 apps (0 goals)
2012 – Preston North End – 17 apps (1 goal)
2012–2013 – Rotherham United – 9 apps (0 goals)
2013 → Accrington Stanley (loan) – 11 apps (0 goals)
2013–2015 – Accrington Stanley – 66 apps (0 goals)
2015–2016 – Mansfield Town – 19 apps (0 goals)
2016–2017 – Leyton Orient – 50 apps (1 goal)
2017–2018 – Notts County – 13 apps (0 goals)
2018–2020 – Crewe Alexandra – 47 apps (1 goal)
2020– Darlington – 3 apps (0 goals)

National team
2004–2005 – England U21 – 9 apps (0 goals)

Fans and ex-players reacted on social media after the National League North fixture was abandoned in the 89th minute…

SEE ALSO: Northern Premier league fixture abandoned due to serious injury

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