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Bradford Park Avenue play-off set for delay
Bradford Park Avenue’s semi-final play-off is set to be delayed because of an appeal by Northwich Victoria on their expulsion from the league due to financial irregularities.
The Evo-Stik Premier Division semi-finals have been put back to Saturday, April 28 from Tuesday, April 24 and the final is now scheduled for Saturday, May 5.
The Horsfall side need just a draw from their final league fixture at Chorley on Saturday to clinch third spot. But the delay in proceedings is far from ideal for Avenue.
Michael Duckworth was sent off in midweek, ironically against Northwich, and his one-match suspension – due to kick in on May 1 – means he now looks set to miss the final if Avenue reach it.
Bradford have qualified for the end of season extras for the third term on the spin. They head to fourth-placed Chorley – who are two points behind them with an inferior goal difference – knowing only a defeat will take their hosts above them.
Avenue lost at Northwich on Tuesday but Chorley were unable to capitalise as they lost 2-0 to champions Chester FC.
The midweek loss for John Deacey’s men kept them below Vics but their expulsion – pending the outcome of an appeal – means Avenue are effectively second and Saturday’s opponents third. That means both sides would have home advantage in the play-offs.
Another club who have put their summer break on hold is Farsley as they are also guaranteed a place in the play-offs.
They have ended their Division One North campaign strongly and earned their passage into the end-of-season extras with a 3-1 win at Harrogate Railway.
The success lifted Neil Parsley’s team up to fourth from sixth. Farsley host Ossett Town on Saturday, while the two clubs immediately below them, Garforth Town and Skelmersdale United, play each other.