Eleventh hour cancellation

NEW MILLS AFC’s Vodkat League Challenge Cup tie against Ramsbottom United on Saturday was postponed at the 11th hour.

Despite heavy overnight frost, the hosts felt that The Harry Williams Riverside Stadium was playable and therefore did not call in a local referee for a precautionary pitch inspection.

New Mills secretary Duncan Hibbert said: “Upon arrival at the ground, the vast majority of the playing surface was bathed in sunshine, but a couple of areas on the far side of the ground were in the shade of the seated stand and were still frozen.

“Match referee Mr Ackers considered that these areas were unsafe and immediately postponed the game.”

The game was eventually called off at 1.45pm.

A new date has not yet been decided for the cup tie, although Vodkat League Fixtures Secretary John Reid recently identified clearing the backlog of Premier Division fixtures as his number one priority.