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Frozen pitch causes cancellation of Rangers fixture

Rangers' match at St Johnstone in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League has fallen victim to the weather. Areas of the pitch at McDiarmid Park are frozen, forcing the referee to make the call after a pitch inspection on Saturday morning.

Rangers manager Walter Smith had no complaints about the decision to postpone the game.

He said: "The area of the pitch which was affected apparently doesn't get the sunlight and it was just the 25-yard area around the penalty box that was the problem as the rest of the pitch was fine. We had absolutely no indication there was any problem."

Asked if he thought the pitch would have been okay had the match been given a 3pm kick-off, Smith added: "I'm not an exert but I'm hearing that the sun doesn't get to that area of the pitch in the winter.

"We came to play the game and the first I knew about it was when I was walking about the pitch and was then told there was a section of the surface which was dangerous. It is dangerous and the referee's decision is the correct one.

"It was Alistair who alerted me to it as he was walking about the section which was frozen so from our own point of view it's really disappointing that the game is off.

"We had stayed in a hotel in Dunkeld and it is a concern that we had no inclination that the game was going to be called off or even that it was in any kind of danger."

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