Yerrinbool and Hill Top match abandoned after injury to referee

Players and fans were left shocked at David Wood Playing Field on Saturday as a men’s premier league match was left unfinished in the second half.

Hill Top was leading Yerrinbool-Bargo 3-2 before the referee was unable to continue the match.

Bushrangers coach Ben Lynch said in the 65th minute the referee informed both sides that due to a knee injury he was unable to keep up with play and could no longer continue.

Lynch said it was a “bizzare” way to finish the day.

He said both sides were told if no official was available for the match, the home team was to provide one.

But neither team had a referee and with no linesman there was no one to fill in.

Both sides will now have to wait and see whether they will have to replay the match or if the result stands.

“We didn’t want to finish that way. It’s one of those games we look forward to every round,” Lynch said.

“It was just shock from everyone [the reaction] for 10 or 15 minutes.”

Highlands Soccer Association (HSA) manager Michael Hamilton said on Sunday morning he was waiting for the referee’s report on the match.

“There is a certain amount of game time that must be played and if that happens the result stands,” he said.

In a match between the two top sides in the men’s premier league competition, Lynch said it was a game both teams looked forward to and it was a disappointing way to finish.

Hill Top held a 3-0 lead before the Bushrangers fought back to 3-2.

The Kookaburras dominated the first half and Lynch said it was only after the break that the Bushrangers started to show “a bit of Yerrinbool heart”.

“In the first half we weren’t in it at all- they were all over us. We just didn’t turn up to play in the first half,” he said.

In the other men’s premier league match, Moss Vale had a 2-1 victory over Mittagong.

Moss Vale coach Gordon Boyd said it was a great team effort from his side to get the points. They scored two “good goals” in the first half through Lachlan Smith and Rheece Denford before Mittagong put Moss Vale under pressure in the second half and finished with a goal.

It was Gene Balamoan who found the back of the net for Mittagong.

“I thought we defended well for most of the second half and I was quite happy with the result,” Boyd said.

With a few younger players stepping up to first grade and some experienced heads in the side, Boyd said the team was rebuilding and was pleased with the cohesion that was building between the players.

“For a lot of the boys it was probably the strongest game they’ve had so far this season.” In the next round Moss Vale will face Bowral while Mittagong will take on Hill Top.

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