The Week Three clash between rookie outfit Knottingley Raiders and Carlisle Sentinels has been postponed until further notice.
Double Coverage has been sent the following statement issued jointly by both sides, who are actively looking to rearrange the fixture at the earliest possible time.
DISCLAIMER: This statement has been sent to Double Coverage by both teams, and is their version of events that have led to the postponement. #TeamDC has requested sight of the exchanges, but has not received anything at the time of publication.
Knottingley Raiders & Carlisle Sentinels Joint Statement:
It is with disappointment that our scheduled game on 23rd April at Knottingley Raiders is officially postponed. This is due to a breakdown in communication between BAFA and BAFRA during the scheduling of games, with no viability to resolve the issues, of which are highlighted below.
On the 16th January, Knottingley Raiders confirmed that their home venue (Knottingley RUFC) were available to host home games on any given date within the season. On the 9th February, BAFA released the adult provisional schedule via email to all teams. Teams were requested to approve both home and away game dates. Unfortunately, due to the delay in scheduling games, Knottingley RUFC had to accept an alternate booking for the original proposed game between Knottingley Raiders and Carlisle Sentinels on the 7th May.
On 4th March, a proposed rescheduled date of 16th April was proposed. This booking was unsuitable for Carlisle Sentinels due to Easter commitments. On the 7th March the ‘virtually approved’ schedule was released to teams, with no fix for the scheduling difficulty. A follow up email was sent on 15th March to BAFA requesting that confirmation of the schedule is finalised as there was just over 3 weeks remaining until Week 1 of the season. Both teams would like to highlight here, as we all know, that American Football in the UK is ultimately an amateur sport and many of the players nationally work Sunday’s and do need to give notice to their employers to take time off to play the game.
BAFA proposed that the game on 16th April be moved to the following week (23rd April). This was accepted by both teams. It is by chance, that at Knottingley’s first home game of the season a referee questioned them having a game on Week 2 and recommended the club email BAFRA to check they were made aware of the schedule changes by BAFA. This email was sent on the 10th April to both BAFRA and BAFA. Unfortunately, BAFRA have highlighted that there is not enough referee coverage available to cover all the games in the area and that they could not provide referees for this date. Other options were suggested that were unrealistic at such short notice for both teams to be able to arrange. Both Knottingley and Carlisle have proposed alternate solutions, to no success.
It is with this that we have had to postpone our game this weekend and hope to continue discussions with both BAFA and BAFRA to resolve the matter and rearrange the game later in the season. Neither team wish to play games without adequate cover by referees, but are extremely passionate about ensuring a full competitive fixture is played by all teams in NFC II Central.