Hawks join ever-increasing list of National League clubs forced to postpone games due to positive Covid-19 tests

Hawks have joined the growing number of National League clubs to have postponed games due to a positive covid-19 test result.

Wednesday, 23rd December 2020, 8:58 am
Hawks have had to postpone three National League South games due to a positive Covid-19 test result among their non-playing staff. Pic: Kieron Louloudis.

The club were forced to call off last night’s scheduled NL South trip to Welling United just a few hours before kick off after a non-playing staff member contracted the virus.It was the second time this season that the game had been postponed due to the pandemic - it was initially called off last month after a positive result in the Welling camp.Hawks’ Boxing Day trip to Hungerford and the home game with Dorking Wanderers two days later have also been postponed.That means five league games in two months have been called off due to Covid-19 - last month’s trip to Bath City being the first.Hawks have been irregularly testing their entire playing and non-playing staff since the 2020/21 NL season began in early October, though there are no regulations to say they have to.But it is understood the positive test result was not revealed as a result of a mass testing session.Everyone at the club must now undergo a 10-day self-isolating period, with the players not allowed to train together until December 30.Hawks’ next game will be at home to Eastbourne Borough on Saturday, January 2.The club have joined an ever-increasing number in their division to postpone games due to positive Covid results.Welling called off four matches and Bath City three last month, including matches against Paul Doswell’s side.Ebbsfleet called off three games, only returning to action earlier this month with a 3-0 home loss against Hawks.Billericay called off two games earlier this month while Chelmsford have called off their Boxing Day game at home to Braintree and next Monday’s trip to Concord.Slough also called off a game at Chippenham last month.Hawks were already playing catch-up with the clubs in the top six, and now they will fall even further behind in the coming days.By the end of this month, they could have five games in hand on Dartford, Hungerford and Eastbourne, four in hand on St Albans and Hampton & Richmond and three in hand on Dorking.Mirroring the national situation, more National League North clubs reported positive Covid results in the opening weeks of 2020/21, but more South clubs have been affected this month.York City only played once between October 17 and November 28, after seven NL North clubs were called off - six due to their own positive cases and one due to a case at Chester.Leamington, Kettering and Gateshead have postponed two league games, while Kettering and Boston United were forced to withdraw from the FA Cup.In the National League, Dover called off five successive games due to having to self-isolate for 14 days, a period which has now been reduced to 10.Eastleigh have postponed three this month, Notts County called off two in October - the Magpies also had to withdraw from the FA Cup - while Altrincham, Stockport County, Weymouth and Yeovil Town have had to postpone league matches.In addition to league call-offs, there have been multiple withdrawals across the FA Cup, FA Trophy and FA Vase.The latest was Truro City. Having beaten Moneyfields in the first round of the Trophy at Dover Road earlier this month, the Cornish club had to withdraw yesterday due to a positive Covid result - just hours before they were due to play their third round tie at Oxford City.Elsewhere, Sussex club Binfield’s FA Vase third round trip to Deal this Sunday has been postponed as the host club are in a tier 4 area.

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At present, Fareham Town’s third round trip to Plymouth Parkway on Sunday remains ON as both teams are in tier 2.