Referee Simon Bennett denied Chester FC the chance to climb out of the bottom four when he ruled the Swansway Chester Stadium pitch unplayable for yesterday’s game against Southport.
Heavy rain overnight left the match in doubt and the Stoke-based official felt a waterlogged area in the six yard box at the south end of the ground was too dangerous.
Wirral referee Rob Jones had deemed the pitch playable in the morning on route to his game at AFC Telford United but Mr Bennett decided to call the game off at 12.45pm.
Secretary Calvin Hughes said the club was disappointed in the decision but understood the referee had to put player safety first.
“I was down here at 9am and the pitch was fine,” he said.
“We had a referee on standby for 10am on the basis we always try and do a pitch inspection before our opponents leave.
“The rain got a bit heavier and more persistent so we brought a referee down at 11.30am and he said the pitch was playable.
“The match referee assessed the situation when he arrived and his area of the concern was an area in front of the goal-line at the away end.
“He said it could be a lottery if the ball got stuck and he was concerned about player safety.
“It is disappointing but the referee’s decision is final and we always abide by that.”
Neil Young’s side would have moved out of the relegation places with a win over the Sandgrounders and they do not play again in the league until January 18 when they host Barnet.
Loanees Ross Killock, John Rooney and George Miller have now returned to their parent clubs following the postponement.
Young hopes to strengthen his squad in the January transfer window and is keen to keep all three loan players around if possible, although that could depend on what other business he can do.
“The three of them have brought everything I expected them to bring,” he said.
“Their workrate, their effort and their desire has been first clash and all three of them had the hunger to do well.”