RUFC - Is it time for Plastic Pitches?
Despite having the new covers that the Football League insisted all league clubs invested in and having those said covers on the pitch at Don Valley all week, the game between Rotherham United and Torquay United was called off yesterday morning.
The covers are designed to protect any pitch up to minus four/five, and, according to the club, they were doing just that with the pitch being playable on Thursday. Unfortunately, with the temperatures plummeting to minus six and a threat of snow, Sheffield League Referee, Jock Waugh, called off the game.
This got me thinking about the 'plastic` pitches that some clubs had in the 1980`s. There were, of course, for`s and against`s for these pitches - the balls bounced higher (which would have been great if every team had a Peter Crouch), they, apparently, didn`t take such a toll on players` muscles because of the spring because they didn`t get muddy in the bad weather. Of course there were the bad cuts and gashes and many injuries that the players ended the game with - watching the rugby league from Widnes on TV last night, where they were playing on an artificial pitch, I noticed a lot of friction burns on arms, legs and faces, although, at the end of the game, the commentators did think the pitch had made the game more 'lively`.
I know Harry Rednapp wasn`t impressed when his Spurs team played Swiss Super League side, BSC Young Boys recently on an artificial pitch but, Mr Rednapp did say if you played on it week-in, week-out, then you would probably get used to it.
I have read recently that the Football League are thinking of giving synthetic surfaces the thumbs up and, indeed, our new stadium is to have a pitch that is part synthetic, part grass mix that can withstand lower temperatures.
So, is this the way to go? Do these so called plastic pitches really withstand colder temperatures? And, my main concern is, will they change the way football is played?
I`m afraid I`m of the old school and think, 'why mend what`s not really broken`?
But, what are your thoughts on plastic/artificial pitches?
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