Stitching synthetic grass into natural turf creates a hybrid that delivers considerably more playing hours than traditional grass fields: good news for Australian sporting organisations seeking a surface that stands up to wear and climatic conditions.
The hybrid turf system has been endorsed by the International Cricket Council, the International Hockey Federation and used across Europe on FIFA and World Rugby approved playing fields. In Australia it has been adopted in Brisbane and Adelaide by Cricket Australia venues and Sydney Cricket Ground, among other venues, Soccerscene reports.
Hybrid grass playing fields stay healthier for longer, and retain less heat than full synthetic surfaces, making them better able to withstand dry weather and wear and tear on high traffic areas such as goal mouths and cricket pitches. Maintenance costs are lower too.
This is good news for sports organisations and venues because it reduces the likelihood of games being abandoned, rescheduled or moved due to the quality of the playing surface, which also has implications for liability and the insurance which covers this risk exposure.
Gallagher National Head of Sport Steve Van Leeuwen says field conditions are the subject of increased scrutiny by insurers. “They’re asking for more information about playing fields and surfaces,” he notes.
“From what we are seeing, reinforced natural turf (hybrid turf) potentially provides the best of both worlds, combining the positive properties of natural grass with the strength of synthetic turf, enabling a durable and sustainable playing surface which mitigates the risk of injury to players caused by an uneven surface and divots.”
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