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Page last updated at 08:49 GMT, Sunday, 10 January 2010

Welsh sport suffers in big freeze

A snowman outside the Millennium Stadium
Great weather for snowmen, but many real-life fans will be staying at home

Swansea City's Championship match away to Middlesbrough was the highest profile victim of the freeze hitting Welsh sports fixtures this weekend.

However, Cardiff's City's home game against Blackpool survived thanks to vigorous efforts to clear access paths.

In rugby, every Welsh Premiership game followed Ulster v Ospreys, Munster v Scarlets and Dragons v Connacht in the Magners League in being called off.

Welsh Premier football games throughout the weekend were also been called off.

Swansea had hoped to make the long trip to the north east as the pitch at the Riverside Stadium is playable, but concerns over the safety of fans has led to postponement by Boro.

606: DEBATE
Ospreeyyss

In rugby, Scarlets became the third Welsh region to have their Magners League match in Ireland called off.

Defending champions Munster had laid protective covers at Musgrave Park and had a contingency plan in place to play Sunday's game at Thomond Park.

But despite the pitch itself being playable, surrounding areas remained in a precarious condition and in the interests of safety the decision was made by officials at 1000 GMT Saturday to call off the game.

Ospreys' trip to face Ulster at Ravenhill and Dragons away at the Sportsground against Connacht on Friday were both called off.

But Edinburgh ensured their Magners League match with Cardiff Blues at Murrayfield went ahead on Saturday evening despite the cold snap.

Cardiff fans try to beat freeze

Not one game in the Welsh Premiership and the Swalec Leagues escaped the big freeze.

In football, Cardiff City's home Championship match against Blackpool is the only major match involving a Welsh side to escape the freeze.

Members of the public joined in efforts to clear the area surrounding the Cardiff City Stadium to make it safe for fans, with the pitch protected by undersoil heating.

Newport County's FA Trophy second-round showdown with York City at Spytty Park was postponed and rearranged for Wednesday, 13 January.

Merthyr Tydfil's home Zamaretto League game with Brackley Town is also off.

Wrexham were without a game on Saturday, but their Blue Square Premier clash with Gateshead on Tuesday is off.

The pitch at Birmingham City
Sports pitches have been left frozen by the cold weather

The Tyneside club have been forced to move their FA Trophy match with Chippenham, rearranged after Saturday's tie was frozen off, to 12 January.

So Dean Saunders' men have suffered their sixth successive postponement.

New rugby league team South Wales Scorpions have been forced to call off a trial scheduled for Sunday at Treforest.

Not even indoor events remain safe. Welsh Athletics has cancelled the first indoor event of the year the 3000m senior Welsh championships and Under 13/15/17 open meeting in Cardiff due to travel problems.

The weekend's racing in Wales was called off as Ffos Las went the same way as Friday's race meeting at Bangor-on-Dee.

Ffos Las were set to enjoy its biggest day since opening in 2009 but the frosty ground meant the Saturday meeting was abandoned.

The Carmarthenshire course had been set for its first televised meeting which included the revived £50,000 Grade Two Welsh Champion Hurdle and the prestigious Grade One £35,000 Tolworth Hurdle.


Events postponed:

FRIDAY:

RUGBY UNION

Magners League:
Ulster v Ospreys
Connacht v Dragons

FOOTBALL

Welsh Premier League:
Cefn Druids v Connah's Quay
Llanelli v Port Talbot
Welshpool Town v Aberystwyth Town

RACING
Bangor-on-Dee

SATURDAY:

RUGBY UNION

Principality Welsh Premiership:
Carmarthen v Newport
Ebbw Vale v Glamorgan Wanderers
Llandovery v Pontypridd
Swansea v Cardiff
Aberavon v Pontypool
Cross Keys v Llanelli

Swalec Leagues:
All games postponed

FOOTBALL
Championship
Middlesbrough v Swansea City

FA Trophy:
Newport County v York City

Zamaretto League
Merthyr v Brackley

Unibond League Division One North
FC Halifax Town v Colwyn Bay

Welsh Premier League:
Bala Town v Newtown
Caersws v Porthmadog
Carmarthen v The New Saints
Haverfordwest v Prestatyn Town
Neath v Bangor City
Rhyl v Airbus UK

RACING
Ffos Las

INDOOR ATHLETICS
3000m senior Welsh championships
Under 13/15/17 open meeting

SUNDAY:

RUGBY UNION

Magners League:
Munster v Scarlets

Principality Welsh Premiership:
Neath v Bedwas

TUESDAY:

FOOTBALL

Blue Square Premier:
Gateshead v Wrexham



see also
British sport ravaged by weather
09 Jan 10 |  Sport Homepage
Guiseley and Dover win in Trophy
13 Jan 10 |  Non League
Cardiff 1-1 Blackpool
09 Jan 10 |  Championship
Edinburgh 21-12 Blues
09 Jan 10 |  Edinburgh
Middlesbrough P-P Swansea
08 Jan 10 |  Championship
Munster clash with Scarlets off
09 Jan 10 |  Munster
Ulster v Ospreys called off
06 Jan 10 |  Ulster
Connacht P-P Dragons (Fri)
06 Jan 10 |  Connacht
Ffos Las race meeting abandoned
07 Jan 10 |  Horse Racing
Welsh Premier
22 Jan 08 |  Welsh
Welsh Premiership
11 Apr 07 |  Welsh
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales


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