Rugby League - Super League clash 'had' to be postponed

Officials of Hull FC and the Rugby Football League claimed they had no alternative but to call off the Super League game with Bradford after motorway chaos left the home side short of players.

PA Sport
Rugby League - Super League clash 'had' to be postponed

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Bradford will now face Hull at the KC Stadium on Sunday afternoon

An accident on the M62 initially delayed the Bulls coach and despite having to detour on the A19, they were able to reach the ground half an hour before the scheduled 8pm kick-off. But with nine Hull players unable to make it to the ground before the latest allowed kick-off time of 915pm, it was decided to move the game back to a 3pm start on Sunday.

Hull head of communication, media and marketing James Clark said: "The match has had to be postponed. The reason for that is that there has been a serious collision on the M62."

Clark added: "The accident involves an oil tanker that contains an unknown substance and that is why the police have had to shut the M62, the nature of the substance means no traffic can pass.

"It did affect the Bradford team coach and they were stuck for over an hour. Unfortunately we have nine players that live in West Yorkshire and they were travelling across. It was a number that does affect whether we can field a team or not."

Hull had first looked to delay the kick-off and also considered playing the game on Saturday.

"We looked at a delayed kick-off, possibly even tomorrow (Saturday), but we had to take into account that this is a joint-use stadium. We thought 3pm on Sunday afternoon was the best bet," added Clark.

The RFL's match commissioner for the game Dave Asquith had no hesitation in postponing the Super League round two fixture. "We tried everything humanly possible but when players are stuck unfortunately we couldn't accommodate that," said Asquith.

Bradford football manager Stuart Duffy admitted that in his 15 years in rugby league he had never gone through anything similar.

Duffy said: "Fifteen years I've been involved with Bradford Bulls, and I've never had to divert off the motorway on the way to a game. Fortunately we were before the A19 (exit and could divert). Realistically eight or nine of their players weren't going to get here before 9.15pm which is the last time the game could have kicked off."

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