Skip to main content Skip to site footer
League One

Orient game off on police advice

26 August 2012

Leyton Orient's League One clash at home to Hartlepool was postponed following police advice, referee Brendan Malone revealed.

The match was called off at 3.30pm on Saturday afternoon with the visitors' coach still in the midst of a traffic hold-up on the nearby M11 that followed a fatal road accident.

Police closed the southbound route leaving Hartlepool marooned and unable to reach Brisbane Road.

Referee Malone said: "It's been a very, very frustrating afternoon. We had full and regular updates from the police but at the time the match was called off the team were still stuck in the accident.

"They had been there since about 1pm-ish. We were in close liaison with the police, Football League and the safety officers at the club.

"I don't think there is a set time when we have to call the game off but having spoken to Russell Slade, the Orient manager, teams take about 25 to 30 minutes to warm-up so we would have had to have given Hartlepool that time. Player safety is paramount and we wouldn't have wanted to pull hamstrings etc.

Orient boss Slade admitted the postponement was a disappointment but used the opportunity to hold a training session.

"Obviously all the hanging about affects your preparation immensely to be honest. I've been here since 11 o'clock and the players have been streaming in since about 12.30pm so it's been a long afternoon," Slade said.

"I think the referee was happy to leave things until 4pm or 4.30pm but the police informed him of the situation and how long the coach might be before it got here and that could have been another three hours.

"We've lost an opportunity to get points on the board, so it's been very disappointing. We are going to take the players out on the pitch now for a little bit of a training session and make the best of it."

Advertisement block