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Last Updated: Friday, 12 January 2007, 15:24 GMT
League probes Blues' postponement
The pitch at St Andrews on Friday
A photograph of the pitch at St Andrews taken on Friday
The Football League says it will investigate the circumstances of Birmingham postponing their home game against Leeds on Saturday.

The Blues were forced to call the game off after problems with the relaid pitch at St Andrews, caused by a week of torrential rain in the midlands.

A League statement said: "We have acceded to Birmingham's request and will investigate the circumstances."

Birmingham could face a fine or even a points deduction from the League.

The pitch was relaid on Monday and Birmingham managing director Karren Brady said the club had done everything it could to get Saturday's game on.

"Nothing more could have been done in terms of manpower, machinery and equipment to get this game on," said Brady.

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"Due to the club's extensive efforts since the freak rainfall on Tuesday and Wednesday to get the game on in the face of adversity, all the areas of turf we've just laid will now have to be dug up and a new pitch laid."

The laying of the new 120,000 pitch, which was the spare one for the new Wembley Stadium, has been severely hampered by adverse weather conditions.

The club were going to relay the pitch in Christmas week, but because of freezing temperatures they were forced to reschedule to this week.

But heavy rainfall has hampered preparations and the club even called in an agronomist (a soil management expert).

This is the first time a senior game in English football has been postponed due to a newly-laid pitch not being ready.

Birmingham may face a charge of failing to fulfil a fixture and a disciplinary commission could hand out a fine or even impose a points deduction.

The game with struggling Leeds will now be rearranged and tickets purchased for Saturday's game will be valid for the rearranged fixture.

The St Andrews club were forced to take action after the FA Cup third round tie against Newcastle last weekend.

The pitch cut up badly during the game and on-loan striker Nicklas Bendtner was stretchered off with a sprained ankle after catching his studs in a divot.

SEE ALSO
Scans allay Bendtner injury fears
08 Jan 07 |  Birmingham City


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