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"One of the most baffling decisions I have ever seen" - Postponement of Highland League football match sparks anger from Keith and Brechin City

By Craig Christie

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Keith and Brechin City have blasted the postponement of their Highland League fixture on Saturday, insisting the game should have been played.

Keith and Brecin insist Kynoch Park was in a playable state.
Keith and Brecin insist Kynoch Park was in a playable state.

Match referee Joel Kennedy declared the Kynoch Park surface unplayable just 45 minutes before kick off, with one small area of the park believed to be a safety concern.

In a joint statement, the club chairmen called Kennedy's decision to postpone the match "baffling" and "nonsensical", and say they will make a complaint to the Scottish FA.

Heavy rain fell on Saturday morning, with several football pitches across the north-east affected. However, there was a rapid improvement with sunshine helping to dry things up in the afternoon.

With over 100 Brechin fans making the journey to Kynoch Park for the crucial match, both clubs wanted the game to be played and even agreed to a later kick off time so that further work could be carried out on the area causing concern.

Brechin, who were ousted from top spot by Banks O' Dee's win on Friday night, are favourites to win the league and accelerate their quest to return to the SPFL ranks through the play-offs.

They still have ten fixtures left to play and will now look to find a rearranged date for the match at Keith.

City chairman Kevin Mackie issued a statement jointly with Keith counterpart Andy Troup.

"I would like to apologise to everyone who was looking forward to a game of football at Kynoch Park (on Saturday)," the statement read.

“For reasons outwith our control, the referee decided that the game should be postponed. This is one of the most baffling decisions I have ever seen.

“Both clubs had agreed that we could delay the kick off (to 4.30pm) if required to allow for sand to be put down to cover the small area that was giving the referee concern.

"The weather was perfect with clear blue skies and no rain forecast for the remainder of the day.

“I would like to highlight that both sets of management and players along with myself and Andy wanted to play the game.

“Far too often I hear the word 'players safety' yet we never see a game cancelled in summer when pitches can be rock hard because of a lack of rain.

“We had over 130 people who had made their way to Keith yesterday and I can only apologise for the lack of common sense that resulted in the game being postponed (at 2.15pm).

“The Club will be making a formal complaint to Crawford Allan, Head of Refereeing Operations at the SFA.

“Our fans continue to turn out in huge numbers and it is disappointing to see so many feel let down by a nonsensical decision.”

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