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Late call on derby washout leave Redbridge boss seething

PUBLISHED: 12:28 29 November 2012

The Cricklefield pitch is inspected by the match officials before being called off last Saturday.

The Cricklefield pitch is inspected by the match officials before being called off last Saturday.

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Redbridge manager Steve Portway unhappy with late call-off of crucial clash.

»Redbridge co-manager Steve Portway has expressed his dismay after last weekend’s big local derby at Ilford was postponed just minutes before kick-off.

With both sides struggling in the bottom three of the Ryman One North table, the clash on Saturday was seen as an opportunity to win valuable points and boost local pride.

However, the Cricklefield pitch was deemed to be unplayable due to the wet weather as several of the visiting players warmed up – and Portway questioned Ilford’s desire for the match to go ahead.

Portway said: “I’m bitterly disappointed by the postponement. My boys were really up for the game and four or five of them were out on the pitch when it was called off.

“It was something like 2.20pm when it was postponed – it was ridiculous.I just got the feeling that Ilford didn’t really want to play, although I really don’t know.

“I’d rested several players for our midweek Ryman League Cup tie against Concord Rangers [which Redbridge lost 9-0], because of the importance of the Ilford game.

“And those boys were especially disappointed on Saturday because they were chomping at the bit to play.”

Weather permitting, the Motormen are set to take on mid-table Needham Market on Saturday before entertaining Croydon in the third round of the London Senior Cup on Tuesday.

And Portway admits that the league game is by far the most important as Redbridge look to end a run of five successive defeats.

He said: “There’s no doubt about it; the league is our priority. Needham are a decent side and I know some of their players, so we’re well aware that it will be a tough test for us.

“We need to stop this run of defeats. But the cup game will be a case of trying out some of our other players again.”


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