Bath Voice Sports News: Bath City’s abandoned away match against Slough due to a medical emergency is awarded to the Berkshire side by the National League (but it means no change in City’s promotion position)

By Harry Mottram: The National League have settled an outstanding controversy about a match that Bath City FC was involved in. In the game on March 2 Bath played away at Slough but the match was abandoned after a member of the crowd took ill. At the time the Romans were trailing 4-2. The result was left undecided but now the three points have been awarded to Slough. The points don’t change anything in the league as Slough remain in 11th position but up to 61 points – the same points as Chippenham. Bath remain on 70 points and following a one nil win against Hampton and Richmond Borough this week are in 6th position – and in the play-off zone.

The National League have made this statement:

Following action being taken by the Football Association against Bath City, the League has now determined the outcome of the abandonment of the National League South fixture on March 2.

It has been decided that the game is not to be replayed, and the match has been awarded to Slough Town in accordance with League rules.

Slough were 4-2 in front when a medical emergency affecting a supporter occurred during the second half of the match at Arbour Park last month.

Tables will be updated accordingly. Regulations state that while the home club are awarded three points, goals for and against are not to be added.

My report of the game at the time is here:

Controversy has broken out over the away game for Bath City FC after Slough fans have vented their frustration online over the match in Slough being abandoned while City were losing by 4-2 in the 70th minute. During the match a spectator took ill and the match officials suspended play so the medics to make an assessment. As time went by it was decided by the referee and his assistants guided by FA rules that the game should be abandoned and replayed at a future date as some 25 minutes of stoppage time had elapsed.

This decision has not been accepted by some in Slough who feel their team was denied a home win and a vital three points since the Town were 4-2 up. They have pointed the finger are Bath’s manager Jerry Gill for accepting the decision of the FA official despite the fact it was not in his remit although he was consulted. However Slough’s manager went one step further describing the decision to abandon the match as a ‘disgrace.’

Scott Davies of Slough said Mr Gill ‘pulled a fast one today’ in his post match interview. He said he gets on with the Bath manager but implied the Roman’s boss saw the game had slipped away from Bath and used his influence to call time on the game. Slough blew Bath City away in the first half, taking a 4-0 half time lead, with the score 4-2 when a medical emergency in the ground led to play being suspended.

Due to the criticism and confusion over what took place the club have moved to issue this statement: “Play was suspended in the 70th minute of the game following a medical emergency in the crowd involving a Slough Town supporter. Everyone connected with the club is pleased to hear that the supporter is now doing well and we all wish him good health moving forward.  Play was suspended for over 25 minutes and the match official stated that he would suspend the game if either side had concerns over the length of the stoppage.  Manager Jerry Gill expressed concerns over the length of the stoppage, with player welfare at the fore of that decision.  The match official made the final call to abandon the game.”

The statement will not stem the criticism from Slough’s supporters that Jerry Gill took the chance when consulted by the referee to abandon the match and seek to play the game another day as the Romans were losing.

Despite the kerfuffle Bath march on in National League South in fifth place – still in a potential play-off position for promotion while Slough are in mid-table – and Yeovil are odds on to return to the National League with a commanding lead in the table.