Disappointment after second Huntingdonshire cup semi-final is forfeited

Two-goal striker Stuart Eason in action for St Ives Town in their 4-0 win over North Greenford on Fe

Two-goal striker Stuart Eason in action for St Ives Town in their 4-0 win over North Greenford on February 7. - Credit: Archant

The county football chief has spoken of his disappointment after a second Hunts Senior Cup semi-final was forfeited.

The prestigious prize has descended into farce with the two highest-level clubs in the area, St Neots Town and St Ives Town, both pulling out.

St Neots were unable to raise a side for a January semi-final trip to United Counties League Premier Division side Yaxley and St Ives have now found themselves in a similar predicament ahead of a trip to Godmanchester Rovers which has been re-scheduled for tonight (Wednesday) after initially being postponed last month.

It is a turn of events which has left Huntingdonshire FA secretary Mark Frost unhappy even though the county body rejected requests for postponements in both cases.

Frost said: “We are obviously very disappointed that both semi-finals have been decided under such circumstances. This is something that the full Hunts FA County Cups Committee will discuss at their scheduled meeting this Thursday evening.

“It is not the outcome that we would have wished for, nor one that the Senior Cup should have had to endure.”

A statement from St Ives explained their position. It revealed: “On Sunday (February 15) St Ives Town FC made a formal request to the Huntingdonshire Football Association for our semi-final to be postponed. This request was unfortunately declined. Therefore regrettably St Ives Town FC had no option but to withdraw.

Most Read

“With competition rules stating only players registered before the original date of the postponed semi final being eligible to play in the re-arranged game, the club have suffered.

“With a host of new signings and players departing during the six-week period it has taken to re arrange the game, we are unable to field a side.

“Due to injuries, unavailability, suspensions, departing players and the new signings not being eligible, we are not in a position to fulfil the fixture.

“We congratulate Godmanchester Rovers FC on progressing to the final and wish them luck against Yaxley FC. All at St Ives Town FC look forward to next season’s competition.”

Godmanchester’s joy at advancing to the final has been tempered by the loss of a potentially money-spinning tie against St Ives. Tonight’s match had been expected to attract a bumper crowd of in excess of 200 people.

Their statement confirmed: “Everyone involved with Godmanchester Rovers FC was very much looking forward to this fixture and all of our supporters around the town were also looking forward to playing against a higher level team.

“We now look forward to the cup final against Yaxley in May and the climax of what has already been a very successful season.”

The final is set for May 1 at the Cozy Stadium in St Neots. It will be Yaxley’s first game in the competition after they had also received a first-round bye!

Rovers and Yaxley have history this season with Goddy knocking them out of the FA Cup before Yaxley claimed revenge in the FA Vase.