Blow for in-form Hucknall Town momentum as game is called off

Hucknall boss Andy Graves.
Hucknall boss Andy Graves.

After two magnificent 7-0 away wins in a row, Hucknall Town are disappointed to have their rescheduled home game with Hilton Harriers postponed this Saturday.

The Central Midlands League have refused to sanction a 4pm kick-off to avoid a clash with the Tour of Britain cycle race going past the ground.

“It’s just unfortunate our momentum is going to be broken up this month because of our fixture being taken off us this Saturday,” said manager Andy Graves.

“It was a rearranged game and as soon as we saw the date of the rearrangement we knew the Tour of Britain bike race was going to run past our ground at 3pm.

“So we contacted the league and suggested could we move it to 4pm. We’d spoken to the police and county council and they’d said everything should be cleared up by then.

“Hilton were in agreement with it and I do believe the officials were as well.

“Unfortunately the fixtures secretary wanted it to be noon or no game. Noon is good for us as we have players at work.”

He added: “I can’t understand why they cancelled it for the sake of one hour with everyone in agreement. It’s a bit crazy to be honest. It stops our momentum.”

Graves is now looking for opposition for a friendly and planning how to keep his players sharp.

He said: “Rather than train, I am going to try to arrange a home friendly if I can find someone to play us next Wednesday. We have put a request out for opposition on social media.

“Worst case scenario we will have an in-house game – first team against reserves – to keep everyone ticking over.

“Also, the five that can play for the reserves will play on Saturday too.

“Then we have the Harrowby , but will have the same problem with no game the week after that too.

“I don’t think we have a home league game until October. It’s not ideal but we’ve been here before. We have to live with it.”

Saturday’s superb 7-0 FA Vase first qualifying round win at Borrowash Victoria has earned them a second qualifying round home tie with Lincolnshire club Harrowby United from United Counties League Division One.

“Obviously we were playing a side a level above us in Borrowash, so it was pleasing,” said Graves.

“I think they are in the midst of a little bit of a struggle, but you can only beat what’s put in front of you.

“We could have had a few more if we’d not been a bit sloppy. But I can’t complain - we are in the next round.”

On next opponents Harrowby, he added: “They have some big names playing for them and some former Hucknall Town players as well.

“They are in a higher division than us and, from all accounts, are having a good go at trying to get promoted, so it should be a competitive game.”

Nottingham Forest legend John McGovern will be Hucknall Town’s guest speaker at their 75th anniversary celebrations on Saturday, 13th October (7.30pm).

The evening also features comedian Gary Goodall and a hot buffet and tickets are £25 each or £160 for a table of eight.