At 7:30 am on Saturday morning, a pitch inspection at Tynecastle Park in Edinburgh led to the postponement of the match between Heart of Midlothian and Inverness Caledonian Thistle. Not the usual postponement reason, though a waterlogged pitch, may have been an issue, but because of high winds. At the inspection, the footballs were being blown from the corner of the pitch to straight into the dug out. This was followed albeit 1 hour before kickoff with the postponement of Frickley Athletic v Nantwich Town, again due to high winds. This is not a common reason, but hopefully will start to become a legitimate one. Many other sports have been cancelled/altered due to wind, notably golf in the Open Championships in St Andrews in 2010 and 2015 and Royal Liverpool in 2014. Ski Jumping was cancelled in Finland last month.
The only previous football match I can recall being postponed due to wind also involved ICT when their game against Celtic was called off 40 minutes before kick off due to safety concerns about cladding in the stadium. Football matches, have traditionally carried on if the pitch was playable. Earlier this season I watched a game between Nantwich and Hyde United, when the Hyde goalkeeper took a goal kick and it travelled to about the edge of the centre circle only to be blown out of play for a corner with only one bounce!
Wallace Mercer, former chairman of Hearts, called supporters customers. If football wants to keep developing they must take supporters (or customers) into account. Watching a game where skills are not one of the key components of performance, will lead to football losing supporters so the decision to call off matches due to the wind I feel is a positive move. I have watched and played in many games where the wind has been strong and I have to admit it is not enjoyable playing or watching. Hopefully Saturday was the start of a more common sense approach to a professional spectator sport.