Midweek News Roundup
There’s been plenty happening in nonleague football this week, so here’s a look at some of the stories that are making the headlines.
Harrogate Town Deducted Three Points
Conference North side Harrogate Town have been docked three points for fielding not one, but three ineligible players in a match against Oxford City. In what the club has described as “an unfortunate clerical error”, the trio – Shane Killock, Craig MacGillivray and Adam Bolder – had not been registered with the league despite being contracted to the club. All three played in the opening day victory at Oxford City, which they won 2-1. The club have also been fined £300 and the club secretary has resigned. The deduction sees Town drop one place to twelfth in the league table.
Hawkins Quits Badgers
Nick Hawkins has stepped down as manager of Northern Premier League Division One South club Eastwood Town after their 3-1 defeat at home to Loughborough Dynamo. Hawkins had, until last week, been part of a joint management team with Chris Shaw. However, Shaw departed last week to join Heanor Town, leaving Hawkins in sole charge. After two defeats, to Carlton and Loughborough, Hawkins followed his ex-colleague out of the Coronation Park exit, citing a lack of trust in those that run the club as his main reason for departing.
Caskey Joins Heed
Darren Caskey, the ex-Tottenham player, has joined Conference Premier Gateshead as Gary Mills’ assistant. Caskey was assistant to Kevin Wilson at Northern Premier side Ilkeston FC, but has jumped at the chance of moving up to nonleague’s top flight. Caskey was an important player for Ilkeston, helping the club win promotion in their first ever season after reforming, and he is sure to be missed at the New Manor Ground.
Cup Brawlers Kicked Out
Both Sleaford Town and Huntingdon Town have been removed from this season’s FA Cup and fined £150 for the mass brawl which occurred towards the end of their First Round Qualifying tie on September 14th. The tie descended into violence after the Huntingdon manager was alleged to have deliberately blocked the taking of a throw in. He was subsequently pushed by the player he blocked, and this sparked the disturbing scenes, said to involve all twenty two players and members of both management teams.
The tie was abandoned after 87 minutes with Sleaford leading 2-1, a score line which would have put them into the Second Qualifying Round for the first time. As a result of the FA’s decision, AFC Sudbury, who were awaiting one of the teams in the next round, receive a bye.