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Monday, 01 September 2014

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Haydock running on empty – cancel Pioneers match

PETROL panic-buying has been blamed for the postponement of an amateur rugby league fixture today.

Haydock contacted Barrow-based Roose Pioneers to say they would not be able to make the 180-mile round trip from Lancashire for their North West Counties Division One fixture because of a shortage of fuel.

Drivers across the country have been panic-buying petrol since Wednesday as fears of a fuel crisis have continued to increase.

Queues have been seen at most garages ahead of a possible strike by fuel tanker drivers.

Haydock secretary Frank Bradshaw said yesterday: “The players were going to travel up in cars, but everyone is struggling to get petrol.

“One lad here can’t even get to work because of the situation.

“It’s disappointing because we enjoy coming up to Barrow.

“We also had to call a game off at Walney Central earlier this season, but that was because we had too many lads working and didn’t have enough players.”

The fixture was Roose’s last ahead of the start of the new summer league, which will see them leaving the North West Counties for a new North West Division.

Pioneers coach Jim Perry said: “It’s disappointing, because we would sooner get it played.”

Amateur football team GSK Ulverston Rangers were due to make a 180-mile round trip today, to play Todmorden Borough in West Lancs Division Two.

That game was still said to go ahead last night. Rangers secretary Phil Grant said: “At the moment we are still going.

“We’re taking a minibus and have got a driver.

“We will see what the situation regarding petrol is like tonight and in the morning. Assuming we can get petrol, we will be going.”

Cumbrian coach firm Reays, who transport Barrow AFC to away games, yesterday said they had no concerns over today’s mammoth 470-mile round trip to play Forest Green Rovers in Gloucestershire in Blue Square Bet Premier.

The Barrow AFC Independent Supporters’ Club had cancelled their coach booking to Forest Green earlier in the week due to insufficient demand.

l The union representing fuel tanker drivers yesterday ruled out the threat of strikes over Easter and said it wanted to focus on peace talks. Unite, which represents around 2,000 tanker drivers, said it retained the right to call industrial action if talks, expected to start next week, break down.

l Hindpool Tigers’ home game against Irlam Hornets today and Dalton’s against Blackpool Scorpions have also been postponed, after the visitors told the home clubs they could not send teams. The decisions are not due to the fuel shortage.

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