Lightning delays Bombers-Eskimos CFL season opener – twice

The CFL lid-lifter has been delayed by lightning in the Manitoba capital not just once, but twice.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Edmonton Eskimos game was halted with nine minutes and thirty-five seconds left in the second quarter with the Eskimos leading 17-7.

Game supervisor Ken Lazaruk said the earliest time the game could resume is 10:45 p.m. EST.

The teams came back out at 11:00 p.m. EST and after a Chris Streveler touchdown pass to Darvin Adams closed the gap to 19-14 Edmonton, lightning stuck again. Winnipeg and Edmonton were ordered off the field with 1:24 on the second quarter clock.

The league is targeting a 12:40 p.m. EST return to play.

There has also been a tornado watch issued for parts of Manitoba. Parts of southern Saskatchewan and Manitoba were pounded by lots of hail and heavy rain in a storm that included tornado warnings in some areas.

There are reports of baseball-size hail.

Environment Canada says a supercell moved through the region Thursday, creating favourable conditions for the heavy weather.

Forecasters warned of “very dangerous” clusters of thunderstorms that could create flash floods.

The storm knocked power out in some communities.

There have been weather delays in three straight seasons and it’s the second time in three years the Bombers have had a delay at home. Winnipeg beat the Ticats 37-11 after a long delay on Aug 4, 2016. Then last season, the Ticats and Argos sat through a two-hour, eight-minute weather delay with Hamilton prevailing 24-22 on Labour Day.

-With CP files

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