The referee blew the whistle after 65 minutes at the waterlogged Stadio Angelo Massimino in Sicily [GETTY]

Heavy rain caused Saturday's Serie A clash between Catania and Roma in Sicily to be abandoned in the second half with the match level at 1-1.

Nicola Legrottaglie had given the hosts the lead in the 24th minute only for Daniele De Rossi to equalise three minutes later.

The match had already been delayed before kick-off due to a torrential downpour, with referee Paolo Tagliavento initially taking the players off the pitch only to return a few minutes later.

But 20 minutes into the second period he called a halt to proceedings with the view to seeing if the rain would stop and allow play to be restarted.

By that time the pitch was so water-logged that the ball wouldn't bounce or roll and the decision was eventually made to abandon the game. The final 20 minutes will have to be played at a later date.

Early advantage

Catania had enjoyed by far the better of proceedings before the stoppage.

Results & fixtures

Saturday January 14

Catania 1-1 Roma
(match abandoned)

Sunday January 15

Lazio v Atalanta
Cesena v Novara
Chievo v Palermo
Fiorentina v Lecce
Genoa v Udinese
Juventus v Cagliari
Parma v Siena
AC Milan v Inter Milan

Monday January 16

Napoli v Bologna

They created the first clear chance but Gonzalo Bergessio headed wide from Mariano Izco's cross.

Roma had a legitimate penalty shout when Aleandro Rosi surged into the box, beating two players before going down but Tagliavento was unmoved.

Bergessio then took a cross from Pablo Barrientos and clean through he beat goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg from close in only to see Simon Kjaer block the ball on the line with his standing leg, having swiped and missed with the other one.

But a minute later Catania took a deserved 24th-minute lead as Legrottaglie rose above Juan to head home Francesco Lodi's free-kick.

The lead lasted only three minutes, though, before De Rossi was afforded the freedom of the six yard box to head home Francesco Totti's corner.

Catania proceeded to dominate the rest of the half and Bergessio twice missed the target when set up by Barrientos while Alejandro Gomez turned Rosi inside out but shot beyond the far post.

By the time the second half started the pitch was so waterlogged that the ball would barely roll along the ground.

One shot from Bojan Krkic travelled barely five yards before the pitch stopped it dead.

The end came when Tagliavento tried to bounce the ball a couple of times and decided the game couldn't go on.

Source: AFP