Harmison disappointed derby game failed to beat inspection

Ashington manager Steve Harmison. Picture by Ian Appleby - www.ianapplebyimages.com
Ashington manager Steve Harmison. Picture by Ian Appleby - www.ianapplebyimages.com

Ashington FC manager Steve Harmison erred on the side of it being a bad thing for the club that Saturday’s derby clash against Bedlington at Welfare Park was called off 90 minutes before the scheduled 3pm kick-off.

However, Harmison had no qualms about the thumbs down decision by match referee Lindsey Robinson.

“I had no complaints. There was standing water on the pitch and I can understand it from the referee’s point of view because players’ safety is of absolute paramount in any sport and at any level,” he said.

“Could they have waited any longer than 1.30pm? Probably not because it rained for 20 minutes after the decision, but it’s frustrating because all of the players were there.

“From our point of view, was it a good thing or a bad thing that it was called off? I think it was the latter because although we have worked hard, we haven’t got anything out of the last three games we have played and we would have come up against a team at the bottom of the league fighting for their lives.

“It was a derby and one which I expected us to be on the front foot to try and win, so from that aspect it was disappointing coupled with the fact that Kyle Oliver’s suspension rolled over into Tuesday’s home clash with Shildon.

“A few are carrying injuries – James Harmison wouldn’t have played but on the other hand James Taylor would have.

“The frustrating thing for me now is that we are trying to build James Taylor up and he probably won’t play against Shildon because of the size, pace and velocity of the game.

“The positive is that it gives the lads a bit of a break after the exertions of the defeat in the Northumberland Senior Cup tie which went to extra time against North Shields, and it also gives Andrew Johnson a chance to get his appetite back and to spend some time in the gym to get his fitness levels up after missing the last two games with flu.”