AROUND 1,700 Wanderers fans were left kicking their heels on Saturday afternoon after a late pitch inspection prompted the postponement of the League One clash with Lincoln.

Bolton had virtually sold out their allocation at Sincil Bank and many supporters were well underway on the 240-mile trip by the time news of a 10.45am check emerged.

Match referee Chris Sarginson and his assistants completed their examination of the pitch 15 minutes later, although the decision to cancel the game was also made with weather forecasts in mind.

There had been some flooding in the local area which was likely to worsen as the day went on, potentially endangering the safety of spectators on the day.

Lincoln have confirmed that tickets for the rearranged game will still be valid – with a date to be confirmed by the two clubs in due course.

The Bolton News:

Wanderers have already had two postponed games this season, the first of their own making against Doncaster Rovers, when it was claimed the well-being of the club’s youngsters could be endangered by making them play twice within a week.

The validity of that claim will be examined by an independent panel, due to meet soon, who could opt to impose a penalty – either points or financial – on the club.

The trip to Burton Albion on October 7 was also shelved because of international call-ups, leaving Wanderers potentially having to reschedule three more midweek games before the end of the season.

Lincoln boss Michael Appleton said his side would have to adapt quickly after the postponed game – but believes the match officials had no choice but to call things off.

“Regardless of having two games in a short space of time, against Shrewsbury and Portsmouth, and getting back very late after Tuesday’s game, the players were in good spirits and looking forward to the game,” he told the club’s website.

“The safety of the players and everyone who is going to be involved in the game has to be paramount. And of course the fans who were travelling across from Bolton. They needed to be told as soon as possible.

“The crowd was going to be near to capacity, which is another disappointing aspect of it, but we need to move on quickly.

“We’ve got to adapt, take it on the chin and move forward. It does change what we'll do next week. It gives us a full week where we won’t have to separate the squad.

“We can work with the full squad on Monday. The players who are coming back from injury will look at it and think ‘that’s one less game I’ve missed out on’.

“They’ll be looking forward to getting another week of training or rehab under their belts.”