Bury A-A Southend United

Poor pitch at Bury
The game at the JD Stadium was abandoned after only six minutes

Bury's home game against League Two play-off rivals Southend was abandoned after only six minutes after torrential rain left the pitch waterlogged.

Despite the rain leaving puddles on the surface before kick-off, referee Tony Harrington opted to start the game.

But both sets of players were called off the pitch shortly afterwards as conditions worsened.

And when it became clear that the pitch would remain unplayable, the referee called the match off.

BBC Radio Manchester

He had hoped to resume the game after a 20-minute delay but the Bury groundsman made little impression on the surface water, despite using a sponge roller.

The two clubs are planning to talk on Monday to arrange a new date for the game to be played.

Fans of both sides leaving the match were handed vouchers entitling them to half-price admission to the rearranged game.

But Bury chairman Stuart Day told BBC Radio Manchester: "The voucher that people have got will give them free admission to the rearranged fixture. That includes the away fans as well.

"They have paid to see a game of football but they only got to see six minutes which wasn't really football."

Bury boss David Flitcroft said the referee had made the right decision to both start the game and then call it off.

"We can't do anything about what's happened, it's something out of our control," he said.

"It was absolutely the right decision by the ref - he had every right to start the game. Well done to the ref for making the right decision.

BBC Radio Manchester's Bill Rice at the JD Stadium
"It rained overnight very heavily but was dry from 10:00 GMT. When I arrived at about 12:30 GMT the pitch had very dry patches. It looked fine during the warm-up - but heavy rain returned before kick-off and the dry patches soon became sodden puddles. The ball was getting stuck in water and not running true in most areas. Six minutes, 38 seconds in the referee spoke to both managers and agreed to take the players off. The initial announcement suggested an inspection after 20 minutes. But when the rain kept falling a postponement was inevitable."

"It's incredible how much it came down just before and during the game.

"It's tough for the Southend fans now who'll have to make the long trip up on a Tuesday night now."

Southend boss Phil Brown added: "I'm disappointed for the travelling fans, first and foremost. Some travelled at 7am this morning, some stayed overnight.

"The forecast was due to be clear, it was like a monsoon. It was the right decision to call it off."

JD Stadium pitch
BBC Radio Manchester's Bill Rice said there were dry patches on the pitch before kick-off, which soon became sodden
Bury groundsman
The Bury groundsman works on the pitch during the delay
Bury players applaud fans
Bury's players applauded their fans after the match was abandoned
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