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Ashford United manager Tommy Warrilow says the decision to postpone the Isthmian South East programme was the right one

By Joe Harbert

Tommy Warrilow has described the coronavirus outbreak as ‘a weird situation to be in’ as a manager, but admits the decision to postpone upcoming matches was the right one.

Ashford, who were scheduled to play Herne Bay last Saturday before then facing Whyteleafe this weekend, have seen all of their Isthmian South East fixtures halted until April 3, it was announced on Tuesday.

Yet despite having just nine games left to play in a pulsating title-race, the United manager acknowledges that people’s safety is simply paramount.

Ashford manager Tommy Warrilow
Ashford manager Tommy Warrilow

“Looking at what’s happened, I think calling off Saturday was definitely the right decision,” the 55-year-old said.

“It was a bit weird knowing that some games nearby were on whilst our one was called off, but I think people are still a bit ignorant on how serious this virus and epidemic could be.

“As much as it’s a nightmare for football, there is more to life and people’s health is the most important thing.

“We all probably think at times that it won’t affect us, but we know with hundreds of people in the crowd that it could, and then it can escalate by those people taking it home with them.

“So at the moment I’ve got no answers to anything, even for the players, who at the moment are obviously just waiting.

“Some of them are working and some aren’t, but then again we don’t know whether training is the right thing to do or not as everyone would be together, so it’s just a weird situation to be in if I’m honest.”

Although Warrilow says it would be disappointing for the club to finish their season early, the former Cray Wanderers boss says the situation would be the same for all those

He added: “Gillingham have pulled their players back from playing at all this week, so it’s affecting everyone throughout all levels of football, and so you just have to listen to the powers that be.

“Even if the season should restart, you just don’t know which way to turn and what to say.

“It would be a shame if it didn’t get going again, but we need to make sure everyone is fit and healthy – obviously if it’s not restarted then it’s for a worthy reason.

“But all the other clubs are in the same boat, so I’ll speak to Don Crosbie (club director) and we’ll eventually see what the outcome is.

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