Catlin reflects on decision behind Pompey postponement

Mark Catlin. Picture: Joe Pepler
Mark Catlin. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey defender Nathan Thompson Picture: Joe Pepler

Thompson sounds warning to Pompey’s League One rivals

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Mark Catlin has no qualms with the decision to postpone Pompey’s trip to Crawley.

Saturday’s fixture was called off just after 9am following an inspection of the Broadfield Stadium pitch.

Frost protective covering and hot-air blowers had been introduced in a bid to combat the cold weather, yet referee Kevin Johnson ruled the surface unplayable.

With rivals Carlisle drawing against Accrington at the weekend, it now leaves Paul Cook’s side three points off third spot with a game in hand.

And Pompey’s chief executive understood the reasoning behind the Crawley cancellation.

Catlin said: ‘In the scheme of games being called off, there is very rarely a right and a wrong way.

‘I fully take on board it would have been nice to have waited until 12 noon.

‘However, if Crawley were confident the game wasn’t going to take place then you always want the club to make the call as early as they can to give supporters the best chance to make alternative arrangements.

‘I was slightly surprised to hear there was a pitch inspection so early because the weather can change during a day and there is still six hours to kick off from when the decision was made.

‘Yet you have to trust the local groundstaff and the referee will make the right choice.

‘Everyone I spoke to at Crawley were desperate to get the game on, but they looked at what happened the previous day when temperatures were similar.

‘On that occasion, areas of the pitch didn’t thaw out during the day, so they used that as a guideline for Saturday’s decision.

‘Fans always want to be advised as early as possible, so you have to go with Crawley’s decision.’

– NEIL ALLEN