Game abandoned with Broch trailing at half-time

Scott Barbour found chances few and far between.
Scott Barbour found chances few and far between.

Fraserburgh Football Club’s Highland League game against Cove Rangers was called off at half-time last Saturday, the Burgh trailing by two goals to nil.

Constant rain from kick-off into the latter parts of the evening had seen the Broch drenched over Saturday, the much anticipated game against the Aberdeen side going ahead despite the conditions.

Already called off elsewhere in the league, before kick-off, was the Clachnacuddin game against Fort William due to a flooded pitch. Despite this, with no sign of the rain letting up, the whistle blew for the last half of football the Bellslea would see in 2013.

With puddles forming on the pitch itself, and much of the standing support making their way into the stands to avoid the rain, the Burgh and Cove struggled to make the best of increasingly farcical conditions, prompting talk of a potential half-time abandonment.

With slide tackles taking players five or more yards from their man, the game began to deteriorate into thumped long-balls into either half, the Burgh’s Peter Alexander Bruce and Scott Barbour struggling to make an impact with their backs to the wind, balls outrunning the normally pacey pair.

Cove, meanwhile, playing into the Station end, saw the ball bounce more kindly for them, allowing their attackers the chance to make the most of the one-on-ones with the Burgh’s back four, a through ball being picked up Connor Scully who slotted into an empty net.

Controversially, the normally solid Paul Leask looked to have been out of the box for the first save, punching a ball clear that looked destined to find the net before seeing the follow-up beat his defenders. Regardless, with a goal for their efforts, Cove spent little time arguing the decision.

Scully grabbed his second in spectacular fashion, smashing a ball onto the crossbar to see it bounce past the line from an attack down the left-wing.

With the whistle blown for half-time, and conditions failing to improve, referee Morag Pirie and her assistants went through the process of checking either half of the pitch before informing both sides that the game had to be abandoned.

With the game to be replayed in the New Year, the Burgh will travel to Cove Rangers next week to play in their first fixture of 2014, the supporters club running a bus from the harbour at 12:45pm.