Not for the first time in recent months, the non-league scene, nationwide, was severely depleted due to adverse weather conditions, and so it proved across Nottinghamshire, only a handful of games getting the go-ahead.
Basford crashed to defeat in their Southern League Central match at home to Barwell, whilst the two games to go ahead in the United Counties League both finished in 1-1 draws, Newark & Sherwood held by visitors Deeping Rangers (Premier North), and Radford when away to Bourne Town (Division One).
The defeat for Basford was to be the final call for the management team, the club announcing, immediately after the 4-0 loss, that manager Mark Clifford, alongside that of Dave Frecklington and Wayne Scott, were relieved of their duties.
Retford though, that was the place to be, with both of their sides in action, and both at home, in the Northern Counties East Division One, and Central Midlands Premier North, the Choughs and the Badgers could well be meeting next season, in the former of those leagues.
The Choughs, Chris Woodhead’s Retford, eased to a 3-0 win at home to Swallownest in the NCEL, they still looking for a play-off spot and currently sit in eighth place, six points off Staveley Miners Welfare, in fifth (the fourth, play-off place), with a game in hand.
Alex Wonham afforded the hosts an interval lead, netting from the penalty spot after thirty minutes, before a second half brace from Liam Bennett gave the hosts all three points.
Retford – Jon Kennedy, Leon Loftus, Haydn Goddard, Graeme Severn, Alex Boyd, Liam Bennett, Kyle Simpson, Keenan McKenzie-Grey, Alex Wonham, Jack Johnson, Oliver Lobley
Meanwhile, in the Central Midlands North, Ryan Tinsley’s Badgers boast an impressive, twenty-four point advantage, heading into the run-in; although sides beneath them have games in hand, it’s looking more and more like they won’t have enough to catch the leaders.
At home to AFC Bentley, a Charlie Baird goal, he getting onto a pass from Mark West before proceeding to flick the ball, backwards, through the visiting keepers legs, early in the first half, afforded the hosts an interval lead and, although the visitors levelled in the second period, just after the hour mark, a late goal, as in last minute late, from Max Pemberton, he getting on the end of a Charlie Dawes corner, ensured all three points stayed with Tinsley’s side.
Retford United – Tom Crosby, Max Pemberton, Owen Fieldsend, Stuart Ludlam, Tom Brook, Daniel Booth, Mason Barlow (Craig Mitchell, 85), Brandon Kane, Jonathan Froggatt (Charlie Dawes, 75), Mark West, Charlie Baird (Igor Mlynarski, 76)
As for those, United Counties matches, Luke White netted early in the second period to give Newark & Sherwood a point against Deeping, and Jordan Alls scored midway through the first for Radford in their draw away to Bourne Town, all other matches involving Nottinghamshire sides fell victim to the weather.
There was even only a couple of games in the Nottinghamshire Senior League Premier Division, just the, now, top two sides, in action; leaders Wollaton picked up a 3-1 win when hosting Ravenshead, and Keyworth United crashed into second place when seeing off visitors Top Valley, 3-0.
As for the promotion race in Division One, Ruddington Village lead the way, by a point, but with games in hand, from second place Southwell City Reserves, the leaders easing to a 3-0 home win over FC Cavaliers; meanwhile, joint-third pairing of Beeston, and AC United, also have games in hand on Southwell.
Beeston claimed a 4-2 win at home to Kirton Brickworks, whilst AC United slipped up, losing 3-0 to visitors Stapleford Town Reserves, who moved into fifth with the win.
*Article provided by Peter Mann (Senior Correspondent).
*Main image @Basfordutdfc Mark Clifford is sacked at Basford United after a 4-0 home defeat.