Rugby and football matches across the country have been canceled as Storm Eunice causes chaos in England.
The Met Office issued two “danger to life” rare red weather warnings on Thursday, urging the public to stay indoors as Hurricane Eunice makes landfall.
Tens of thousands of homes have lost power and rail companies have urged people to postpone their travel plans.
Sport was not spared the chaos, with fan travel plans disrupted and several rugby and football matches cancelled.
South Wales has been badly affected by the storm. Friday night’s Cardiff United Rugby Championship (URC) clash with Italian side Zebre was the first sporting fixture to be cancelled, and has been postponed to an unspecified date in the future.
The visitors’ inability to guarantee their air travel and other “logistics and facility challenges” made the game unreplayable on Saturday or Sunday. The new date has not been set.
Two of the region’s Football League clubs playing at home this weekend, Cardiff City and Newport County, said I that currently they do not expect to cancel their respective games against Blackpool and Mansfield Town.
West Ham United intend to meet their match against Newcastle United in the Premier League’s midday kick-off on Saturday, report I: “The game is going according to plan, and if there are any changes, we will let our fans know on our official channels.”
On the south coast, AFC Bournemouth’s clash with Nottingham Forest was postponed past 3pm on Friday after structural engineers deemed the Cherry Vitality Stadium unsafe for fans due to damage.
Full list of postponed matches
- Bournemouth vs Nottingham Forest (Campeonato)
- Exeter City vs Barrow (Dos League)
- Altrincham vs Weymouth (National League)
- Halfiax Town vs Dover Athletic (Nacional League)
- Southend vs Grimsby Town (Nacional League)
- Dunfermline vs Partick Thistle (Campeonato Escocés)
- Cardiff vs Zebre (United Rugby Championship)
After traveling to the south coast on Thursday night, Forest were furious that the decision was made just hours before kick-off and offered to play on Saturday morning, although Bournemouth refused.
Structural integrity concerns were also the reason League Two’s Exeter City canceled Saturday’s clash with Barrow. In a statement, the club said: “We did not have sufficient opportunity to inspect the high-rise structure to ascertain whether persistent high winds have caused lasting damage.”
In the southeast, Southend’s National League game Friday night against Grimsby Town was postponed after strong winds blew advertising banners, screws and other debris onto the pitch. Southend said in a statement: “In light of this deteriorating position, the league has agreed to cancel the match.”
It joins FC Halifax Town vs Dover Athletic on the postponed fifth tier list, which was canceled on Friday due to a waterlogged pitch in West Yorkshire.
Heavy rains also led to the postponement of Dunfermline Athletic’s match against Patrick Thistle in the Scottish Championship. The only game Friday night north of the border was called off because the pitch at East End Park was flooded.
In League One, Friday’s top-flight clash between Rotherham United and Wigan Athletic is due to take place despite fears of heavy rain prompting the club to warn fans of possible entertainment earlier in the day.
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