ALTRINCHAM: 1. Richard HARRISON, 2. Alex FROST, 3. Adam DOUTHWAITE, 4. Michael BAILEY, 5. Greg BYRNE, 6. Paul GLYNN (capt.), 7. Francis EVANS, 8. Jon McEVOY, 9. Steve LUNT, 10. Luke KILLEEN, 11. Josh COLLINS. Subs: 12. Todd HAYES, 14. Stuart COOK, 15. Joel EKOLENGENI, 16. Andrew THORPE, 17. Barry GEORGE (gk),
Michael Bailey defends his lines in the first half, as Paul Glynn looks to block a pass to the no.14.
This was Altrincham's first game for seven weeks and this match, too, had been in doubt after heavy overnight rain on the Wythenshawe Town FC pitch. The Alty team had trouble assessing the opposition as the visitors failed to present a teamsheet but the home side knew that their opponents were the league leaders and would be a tough prospect, whatever their identities. Altrincham included Steve Lunt, who has had first-team experience this season but was returning from injury. Full-back Mark Griffiths was ill whilst on the bench was a newcomer, Todd Hayes.
After some early promise from Altrincham, it was Kingsley who took the lead after just four minutes. A free-kick was awarded to the Liverpool side in a central position just outside the box. The first attempt at taking it caused no problems but the referee ordered a re-take for encroachment. This time the Kingsley free-kick taker floated a well-placed effort into Richard Harrison's top right-hand corner. The keeper could not be blamed for conceding to such a fine effort. Alty almost levelled after ten minutes when a good ball from McEvoy up the centre of the pitch set Killeen running, slightly to the right of goal. His cross found Collins, unmarked, at the back post but the angle was just too acute for the tall no.11 to steer his shot the right side of the post. Alty then had a scare when the Kingsley no.10 got past Harrison but his shot was well cleared off the line by Frost. Play swept to the other end and Lunt's persistence in the box paid off when he knocked the ball home from a central position to make the score 1-1 (17 mins). At this point the rain became sleet and intensified in strength.
Bailey and Byrne were doing well at the back, with Douthwaite and Frost, but it was often difficult to clear the ball effectively on the heavy pitch and Kingsley had a number of efforts at the Alty goal which goalkeeper Harrison dealt with very well. At the other end, a volley from Lunt was Alty's best effort at this stage but this was well saved by the opposition keeper (30 mins). A foul on Glynn earned Alty a free-kick on the right, expertly taken by Evans, which produced a corner. However, Kingsley soon won a corner of their own when a shot by their no.8 was deflected wide (39 mins). Altrincham finished the half with a couple of half chances but the interval came with score still 1-1.
|Half-Time: ALTRINCHAM YOUTH 1 KINGSLEY UNITED 1|
Alty brought on Todd Hayes for Luke Killeen at the interval as Luke was suffering from flu symptoms. An early breakaway saw Lunt's effort saved. The speedy Hayes soon made an impact up front and, indeed, he even had the ball in the net after 51 minutes, only for the goal to be ruled out for offside. Altrincham were playing well but heavy hail now started to sweep across the pitch, blown on a gusty wind. Conditions were bad enough for the spectators but for the players they were even more uncomfortable and as the hail began to settle on the pitch, the referee took the players off to the changing rooms (56 mins). Initially the referee had planned to leave things for 10 minutes before considering a resumption. However, the hail then turned to snow and this led the game to be abandoned.
|Full-Time: ALTRINCHAM YOUTH 1 KINGSLEY UNITED 1|