DORCHESTER Town have been handed a miraculous reprieve from relegation.

It comes after the FA voided all leagues from Steps 3 to 6 with immediate effect, due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Magpies were sitting rock bottom of the 22 teams in the BetVictor Southern Premier South, 11 points from absolute safety with 10 games remaining.

All results for the 2019/20 campaign have been expunged. 

There will also be no relegation or promotion in Steps 3 to 6, with no clubs facing relegation from Step 2. Step 7 clubs will also be affected by the directive.

National League clubs, including Weymouth, still await the outcome of talks with the FA over the completion of their season.

Portland United, Bridport, Balti Sports and Dorchester Sports are among the major Dorset clubs to have their seasons terminated.

A planned restructuring of the National League system will be deferred to the 2021/22 campaign.

In a statement, the Southern League said: "The FA and leagues at Steps 3 to 6 have reached a consensus that the 2019/20 season will be ended with immediate effect and all results will be expunged.

"This will mean that there will be no promotion or relegation of clubs between Steps 3 to 6, or relegation from Step 2.

"In light of the above, these decisions will also apply to the leagues and clubs at Step 7 of the National League system.

"The FA will continue to assist and support the National League to determine the outcome of the 2019/20 season.

"Consideration was given as to whether the season could be extended indefinitely, or to some later date in the future in order for it to be completed.

"However, given the current uncertainty regarding when it will be possible to resume competitive football in England, and the fact that many clubs and contracted players want certainty over when football will resume, this option is likely to present great difficulties for football between Steps 3 to 6.

"On the basis that the season is ended now, consideration was given as to whether a mechanism should be used to calculate final league tables and preserve promotion and relegation between Steps 3 to 6.

"Whilst inevitably some clubs will favour this option and the merits of this option have been fully considered by The FA and the leagues, it has been decided that this is not the best option to serve the particular needs of Steps 3 to 6 of the NLS.

"The planned implementation of the restructure of the NLS will be deferred until the start of the 2021/22 season.

"The decisions reached by the NLS leagues will be recommended to the FA Board and FA Council for final ratification."

In the women's game, tiers three to seven have been terminated immediately.

Talks continue over the fate of the Women's Super League and Championship.

The FA also reiterated its desire to complete all major cup competitions, including the Emirates FA Cup, Women’s FA Cup, Buildbase FA Trophy, Buildbase FA Vase, FA Youth Cup, FA County Youth Cup, FA Sunday Cup and the FA Inter-League Cup.