Rugby Read: Game Abandoned After Injury and Poor Conditions

An ambulance called, a player taken away with an injury and poor pitch conditions following bad weather saw Portsmouth’s game abandoned against London Cornish after 64 minutes, reports S&C Rugby Correspondent, Will Payne.

The away match with London Cornish took place on a bitterly cold day on Cornish’s second team pitch. Despite the eventual decision to abandon the game, a lot of credit must go to the players from both teams for their undisputed hard work in giving the spectators a great game for 64 minutes.

Cornish set the match off to a great start, scoring in the 13th minute and then again in the 28th, converting one and getting another penalty,  leaving the half time score at 15-0.

There was little additional action than these two scores in the first half, with the poor pitch conditions following snow the previous night making it hard for both teams to attack.

Portsmouth’s attacking play in the first half was no easy feat, but London Cornish – the team at the top of the league – were just too hard to break down.

For the first 15 minutes of the second half Portsmouth dominated possession, but failed to get past the immense wall that was London Cornish.

Unfortunately, Captain Darren Crabb and Full Back Stuart Davies were forced off after picking up injuries, who were then replaced by Finn Parry and player coach Ben Dudley.

Portsmouth were doing well to keep Cornish out, but in the 61st minute they manged to go over and convert making the score 22-0.

In the 63rd minute, Cornish’s new signing Christopher Kolapo-Ajala scored again, making it 29-0 and securing that all important bonus point.

From the following kick off, Portsmouth went on the attack, Curtis Barnes cut a great line but was caught at the last second with an ankle tap. Unfortunately, it looked as though Curtis had suffered a serious injury and an ambulance was called. With no other pitch in a condition to play on, after consultation from both coaches and captains, the match was abandoned.

Following multiple scans at the hospital, PRFC confirmed to us that no injuries had been sustained to Curtis’ neck, although he had suffered a concussion as a result of the fall. He will now attend multiple meetings to make sure he is fully fit again, and will follow the RFU concussion protocol before playing again.

From everyone at Star & Crescent, we all wish Curtis Barnes a very speedy recovery and look forward to seeing him back on the pitch with his team mates.

The decision on replaying the abandoned game went to the RFU Competitions Committee, which released the following statement:

‘It is clear that the game was abandoned due to injury and in agreement with both clubs and the referee.

13.6.7 b ii has been compiled with, it is not in the interest of the game or either clubs to request that the fixture be played at a later date.’

This means the score will stand. Portsmouth’s next game is at home on the 18th February against London Exiles, who are currently 7th in the league. After the loss to London Cornish, Portsmouth sit at 9th place, 10 points clear of Andover.