ANT Smith hopes Concord Rangers’ hopes of reaching Wembley Stadium in the FA Trophy final have not disappeared.

The Beach Boys were due to travel to Halesowen Town for the first leg of their semi-final tomorrow, but the coronavirus epidemic has led to all fixtures being postponed until April 3 at the earliest.

Some have questioned whether the remainder of the FA Trophy will be scrapped, but Smith remains in regular contact with those in control of the competition.

“The fact that our FA Trophy semi-finals have been postponed is a bitter pill to swallow,” said the Concord chairman.

“If it goes a certain way, it would be gutting for us as a club.

“We had already sold 250 away tickets and I think we would have got to 400 before the weekend.

“No-one would have expected that when we were in the Essex Senior League.

“I have still got hope that the semi-finals and final will go ahead. I’ve been in daily contact with the Football Association and they are exploring all avenues for the games to be played.

“If our record-breaking run was to end here, it would be very disappointing for everyone.

“I haven’t thought about whether I would take legal action if the remainder of the competition was scrapped.”

Should the competition continue after the enforced break from football, Concord or Halesowen will face the winners of the other semi-final tie involving National League outfits Notts County and Harrogate Town at Wembley.

And Smith reveals the sides remaining in the competition would miss out financially if the FA Trophy was to end prematurely.

“The biggest thing for us and every club is the financial side,” added Smith.

“Had we won the semi-final tie over the two legs and played at Wembley, we would have got £70,000.

“Even if we had have gone out at the semi-final stage, we would have earned £15,000.

“That is a big amount for a club of our size and, if the ties do not go ahead, it would be a massive loss.”

While the likes of the Premier League, Football League and Isthmian League postponed all of their fixtures last weekend, the National League allowed clashes to go ahead.

The decision came under fire from some quarters, but Smith backed the choice and was pleased to see the Beach Boys’ 3-3 stalemate with Tonbridge Angels go ahead as planned.

“Personally, I agreed with the National League’s decision to allow games to go ahead at the weekend,” admitted Smith.

“I thought the Premier League and Football League suspended their respective seasons a bit too early.

“I believe what the experts and Government have been saying and, at that stage, I thought it was unnecessary to postpone fixtures.”