FA TROPHY ROUND DATES
Preliminary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saturday 7th October 2006
First Round Qualifying . . . . . Saturday 21st October 2006
Second Round Qualifying . . .Saturday 4th November 2006
Third Round Qualifying . . . . .Saturday 25th November 2006
First Round . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saturday 16th December 2006
Second Round . . . . . . . . . . . Saturday 13th January 2007
Third Round . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saturday 3rd February 2007
Fourth Round . . . . . . . . . . . . Saturday 24th February 2007
Semi Final 1 . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saturday 10th March 2007
Semi Final 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saturday 17th March 2007
Final . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sunday 20th May 2007
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DETERMINING THE SUITABILITY OF GROUNDS
As published by the Football Association in the booklet "Directives and Competition Rules for the Contributory Leagues" - see League Rule 15.2
Each Club must take every precaution to ensure that its ground is in a fit playing condition.
When the regional weather conditions are known to be extreme (e.g. prolonged severe frost, clear water logging or heavy snow) then the game can be postponed at the discretion of the League following consultation with the League Secretary, League Rules will apply; this is not an issue for the match day referee. Should the League decide to agree to an early postponement under such circumstances there will be no need for a pitch inspection.
In all other circumstances and subject to time and travelling distance, the match referee should be called in to make a decision. In the event of the match referee being unable to carry out the inspection, the Home Club must select an alternative referee listed within the National List of Contributory Referees (from the Division Two Referees Supply List when Division Two clubs are involved).
Should it not be possible to identify an appropriate Match Official, the Appointing Authority (the Football Association) will determine a suitable person to carry out the inspection.
Prior to reaching a decision the referee who is making the inspection must:
- Consult with the match referee prior to the inspection
- Consult with the match referee during / after the inspection to mutually agree on a decision prior to notifying the Home Club Secretary or Club Chairman and the League Secretary (or Chairman if the Secretary is not available).
Prior to reaching a decision the referee who is making the inspection should consider the following:
- The existing condition of the playing surface in conjunction with the prevailing weather conditions as previously confirmed with the local weather authority
- The views of the Home Club Groundsman in terms of local knowledge and draining capabilities in the event of standing water
- The manpower available to the Home Club to carry out any necessary work to make the ground playable
- The time the visiting Club are due to commence their journey
- Whether or not the ground (playing area) is dangerous (e.g. ice/frost)
- Whether or not that the spectator standing areas are dangerous (e.g. ice/frost)
- Whether or not conditions are or could turn farcical
- In the event of fog check with the local weather authority re possible clearance, also bearing in mind the visitors' travelling arrangements if the fog is known to be widespread. If fog is the problem then the match referee should also consider whether or not the paying spectators would be able to view the whole area of play
If after consultation with the match referee the ground is declared fit and the away Club is instructed to travel, then only in exceptional circumstances should the match referee reverse the decision.
If an early inspection has not been carried out and the match referee arrives at the ground to find the playing conditions in doubt due to unexpected deterioration in the weather, he should first consider as many of the above points before committing himself to a decision.
In the event of a pitch inspection being carried out by a referee other than the match referee, a fee of half the referee's fee may be offered, plus travel expenses, paid by the Home Club. If the appointed Match Officials have reported to the ground they are entitled to their expenses plus half their match fee if the match is not played.
The Competition Secretary, Bruce Badcock, must be informed in advance in all cases of the date and time when a pitch inspection has been requested, and then of the outcome once the inspection has been completed and a decision taken.
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