Gorleston advance in FA Vase after Basildon decision to forfeit tie which was abandoned due to spectator death

The air ambulance lands on the pitch at Emerald Park, Gorleston FC's ground. Photo: Twitter/@essexfo

The air ambulance lands on the pitch at Emerald Park, Gorleston FC's ground. Photo: Twitter/@essexfootie - Credit: Twitter/@essexfootie

Basildon United have forfeited their FA Vase tie against Gorleston, which was abandoned on Saturday due to the death of a spectator.

The visitors had been leading 1-0 with just over four minutes remaining of the third round tie at Emerald Park but have decided to forfeit, after the Greens decided they would like to replay the tie.

The incident had caused distress to players, with the air ambulance attending within five minutes but paramedics unable to resuscitate the man, since named as John Bailey, the father-in-law of Gorleston goalkeeper Taurean Molloy.

Gorleston secretary Colin Bray explained that FA laws state that the situation deemed the game should be replayed, unless either team wished to forfeit.

'I contacted our club chairman, Mr Alan Gordon, and first team manager, Mr Ricci Butler, with these details,' he said. 'We all agreed to talk to our goalkeeper, Taurean Molloy, whose father-in law-it was that passed away and ask him how he and the family feel about the situation.

'He confirmed that the family would like to 'go again'. Our decision was not taken lightly nor to benefit the club or team. We certainly did not want to cause any distress or disrespect to the family.'

Gorleston are now set to host Coleshill in the fourth round on Saturday, January 7.

Full statement, from Gorleston FC secretary Colin Bray

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'I feel at this time we would like to clarify the situation in regard to the FA Vase fixture and subsequent awarding of the game.

'Firstly we would like to extend our thoughts and condolences to the family and friends of John at this sad time.

'The club was contacted by The FA on Sunday morning and informed that FA rules state:

'When a first match has been postponed, or is abandoned before the completion of 90 minutes and neither Club being at fault, it shall be played on the same ground, in the Third Round Proper - on or before the following Saturday.'

'We were then asked if Gorleston FC would like to agree to this, but also given the option of forfeiting the game due to the situation.

'I contacted our club chairman, Mr Alan Gordon, and first team manager, Mr Ricci Butler, with these details. We all agreed to talk to our goalkeeper, Taurean Molloy, whose father in law it was that passed away and ask him how he and the family feel about the situation. He confirmed that the family would like to 'go again'.

'Our decision was not taken lightly nor to benefit the club or team. We certainly did not want to cause any distress or disrespect to the family.

'I informed Basildon and The FA of our decision later on Sunday.

'Today we have had subsequent emails from The FA and Basildon stating their decision to forfeit the FA Vase tie v Gorleston.

'I would like to thank all at the club who did all they could in a difficult situation and special thanks to the emergency services for their quick response and assistance.'

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