What to Do When Your Game is Rained Off

Posted on June 21st, 2012 in Blog.

Perhaps the worst thing that can happen when you’re anxiously awaiting your game, is that it’s rained off – and with the unpredictable British weather, you need to be prepared.. If the game is rained off then an important decision has to be made. If the game is rained off then it’s important that the manager takes some responsibility and steps in. Here’s what to do if the game looks like it’s about to be rained off.

Assess the Scene

If the scene is ambiguous then wait and see how it plays out. If it’s only threatening to rain then don’t worry, but if it’s started coming down heavily then consider the situation carefully. If the game is approaching the point of no return then liaise with the opposition manager and the referee immediately. This is a decision that has to be taken by everybody and not just one person. It has to be a decision made by all parties.

Call the Team Off

Call the team off the field if the decision is taken to abandon the game. It’s usually not because everybody is afraid of a little mud, it’s due to the fact that it’s a health and safety concern. In the case of football a slide tackle could mean that the player slides an extra few feet, and this follow-through can really damage another player if done incorrectly.

Take the team and place them in the changing rooms and tell them to get changed. Don’t worry about the result at this point as it’s not important. The imperative thing is health and safety because at the end of the day it’s just a game. The time for discussing results is to be taken after the game.

On a side note, the team that’s usually leading by a clear margin will be given the result. Although, this sometimes differs as some leagues will automatically declare the match to be a draw by default. Never bank on getting the result to go a specific way when it comes to a game being rained off.

Prepare to Go Home

If the game is rained off then there’s absolutely nothing that can be done that day. Don’t waste time with tactics or extra training, just get everybody off home. If the game is rained off early and transportation for all players isn’t available then have the players call for transportation or wait around until their transportation arrives. The point is that the manager should always be the last person to leave. No player should be left on their own at the ground in the event of an abandoned game.

If there are only a few players left and their rides are still quite far away then the manager may take the decision to take each individual player home. Only in some situations will this be practical, but if there’s any doubt then just wait around and always be the last individual to leave.

If it’s a home game and the other team are present then this rule should also apply to the other team. As the hosts the visiting team should always be got home before anything is closed up or the manager leaves.

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