Date:Sunday December 19 2010
Rotherham United travelled to Torquay on Friday, with no notion that their game at Plainmoor on Saturday was under any threat.
After speaking to someone at Torquay on Friday fans also took the decision to drive down, some on coaches, others in mini buses and cars, some travelling for the weekend, some starting off early on Saturday morning. It's the Saturday before Christmas and people were wanting to start the holiday season off with a visit to watch their side play.
In hindsight, that was the wrong decision.
Stopping at service around ten in the morning, we phoned Plainmoor only to get a recorded message saying that the game against Rotherham would kick-off at 3.00pm. We were still getting that message forty-five minutes later, even though, by then we knew the game was off.
I think the rest is history, getting stuck in heavy traffic for hours in horrendous driving conditions, limping home at midnight - what you put up to support your favourite football team, eh!
Within hours of the game being cancelled, an apology to travelling Millers fans was on Rotherham United's Official Site, saying 'Rotherham United would like to state that the club were not informed that there was a pitch inspection planned, until or, that the game was in serious doubt until 10.30am.
'Despite regular attempts by Rotherham United to obtain updates from Torquay United, no information was forthcoming, Rotherham United only found out that there was an issue with the game when the kit was dropped off at 10.30am, when the referee and local authorities were present at the ground to make the correct decision and call the game off.
'The club would like to apologise to supporters who have made the journey down to Torquay.'
On Torquay's Official Website it says , Due to safety concerns and on Police advice the game against Rotherham United has been called off.
'We would like to say a massive thank you to the volunteers who have helped to clear the snow off Plainmoor this morning'
I suppose we should have known, when Torquay said they weren't using the stands because of safety and that they needed volunteers to clear the pitch there was going to be a doubt - so why didn't they tell us this on Friday in one of the conversations we had with them? I honestly think, if we'd known there was a doubt at 2pm on Friday we would have made the decision not to travel. And, maybe this is just me, but I would have thought that there should have been someone in the office taking phone calls and not just a taped message - because we could have turned around a lot sooner and maybe missed most of the traffic chaos.
I know we weren't the only team affected yesterday, speaking to some Chesterfield fans they'd actually got to Gillingham before their game was postponed. It's difficult for clubs to have to make a decision, I suppose, but I wish, for once, they'd think of supporters who have some way to travel. We still have coaches to pay for and arrangements to make and it a bit of consideration would be nice.
On a good note, I know that most people made it back OK yesterday.
Date:Sunday December 19 2010
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