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New 3G pitch for Rugby Union team, Rosslyn Park

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After nearly a month of preparation works, the new 3G pitch is ready to be laid this week by SIS Pitches for National League One team, Rosslyn Park RFC.

They are the third rugby union team to convert to artificial grass by SIS Pitches, following on from Newcastle Falcons in 2014, and Saracen’s in 2013, who both play in the Aviva Premiership league.

The current natural turf pitch at the London stadium is being replaced with SIS Pitches’ premium product, Rugger 65, which is also used by the two Premiership teams. It is ideal for rugby games, with proven durability even after intensive use. This was also manufactured by SIS Pitches in their Cumbrian factory, and will be tested to meet World Rugby Standards.

Rugger 65 incorporates top of the range yarn, MN Ultra from Scottish firm Bonar Yarns, who are a key supplier to SIS Pitches.

Bryn Lee, Commercial Director at Bonar Yarns, commented:

Rosslyn Park is one of the oldest clubs in the country and now becomes one of the first to embrace 3G synthetic turf technology. In choosing SIS Pitches’ product Rugger 65, which incorporates Bonar Yarns MN Ultra fibre for the grass, Rosslyn Park have opted for a market-leading system designed for a fast paced game of rugby.

No doubt the League One side, plus the other teams throughout one of London’s largest clubs, will relish the new pitch.

Rosslyn Park wanted to convert its grass rugby pitch into an artificial playing pitch on its main site to increase activity across its membership and the local community.

The new artificial pitch forms part of a whole club development project titled ‘Securing the club’s future’, which also includes new shower and toilet facilities, new fencing and improvements to the bar and catering facilities.

Shaun Justice, Managing Director for Rosslyn Park, said:

We are very excited about the new pitch currently being installed by SIS Pitches. Replacing the grass pitch and training area with an artificial 3G pitch facility will allow the club to significantly increase playing time, activity levels and access, benefitting all playing and non-playing sections of the club.

Use of the 3G pitch will also be offered to the wider Wandsworth community, an area deprived of good quality outdoor pitches.

Final works to complete the project at Rosslyn Park’s rugby club ground should take another few weeks, and the new pitch will be ready in plenty of time for the new rugby season starting in September.

SIS Pitches will also be working with another National League one team over the summer, with a new 3G pitch also being installed for Loughborough University.

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Durham University unveils second Rugger 65 3G pitch

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Durham University’s huge sporting programme is set to expand still further this autumn with the unveiling of its second 3G synthetic turf pitch. The Rugger 65 pitch, laid alongside the first one installed in 2009, boosts Durham’s capacity to stage college, community and national fixtures across rugby, football and lacrosse.

Sport England has match-funded the 3G facility under a performance partnership that will see Durham deepen its involvement with community sport under a mission to extend the University’s prominence and outreach throughout grassroots and top-flight sport.

Dean of Experience Durham Peter Warburton specified SIS Pitches for the second Rugger 65 facility, which includes floodlighting, perimeter fencing and dugouts, after witnessing major success for its first 3G pitch, which has created a sporting hub for clubs, the community and elite squads.

Working under Senior Project Manager Ian Tubman for both 3G schemes, Will Roberts, the university’s Projects and Technical Assistant for the Estates and Building Department, said:

The second 3G pitch is going to be tested to IRB and FIFA Gold Star standards, allowing top-flight rugby and football, as well as lacrosse, to be played on it. The design and build engineering package that SIS provides has proved to be very efficient, bringing plenty of betterment value to the pitches and site as a whole.

Durham’s first Rugger 65 rubber crumb full-size floodlit facility has become one of the most intensively used pitches in the country and the university expects the latest installation to emulate that level of use. Durham is now ranked second only to Loughborough in the league table of British university sports provision, running 34 rugby teams, 36 hockey sides and 66 football (23 of those, women). Warburton said:

The new Rugger 65 pitch will enable us to stage match back to back games from 9am to 8pm throughout the weekend, as well as every lunchtime and evening in the autumn. Meanwhile, clubs and squads can use the 3G pitches on weekday mornings and afternoons.

Phil Blackwell, Director of SIS Pitches, said:

Demand for synthetic surfaces for rugby is set to grow strongly. Saracens is showing the way forward (the Aviva Premiership champions chose the Rugger 65 surface for its Allianz Park new home earlier this year). Over the next ten years, the future for rugby will be on mostly synthetic surfaces.

Serving a 15,000 student body, Durham also runs two full-size synthetic hockey pitches, eight natural turf rugby pitches, innumerable football areas and four cricket squares (one all-weather).