Hybrid grass has become increasingly popular, offering increased pitch stability and more playing hours in comparison to 100% natural grass.
The surface can be installed in an existing full-size football pitch in as little as four days.
This year for the first time in World Cup history, a combination of hybrid grass and aeration systems were used, with the venue for the final, Luzhniki Stadium, receiving over 84 hours of use over just 35 days.
The stadium hosted a total of 16 hours of games, eight hours of training sessions, 31 hours of rehearsals and ceremonies and 29 hours of VAR and GLT tests.
Despite the intensive use of the pitch, it still looked and performed exceptionally well for the final, which was a credit to the maintenance team and the latest pitch technologies.
Six out of 12 pitches at the World Cup used the innovative SISGrass technology, developed by SIS Pitches.
SISGrass machines can install hybrid surfaces at a variety of spacings and depths, using patented fibre injection technology and laser guidance for greater accuracy when inserting the uniquely engineered, polyethylene fibres into the grass surface. These soft, two-tone green colour fibres maximise player comfort and blend into the natural turf sward to provide a seamless playing surface.
SISAir assists by managing the soil moisture content, aids root development and supports the promotion of healthier turf.
It can also boost ventilation of the root zone, providing optimum levels essential for healthy root growth and managing potential disorders. SISAir brings benefits throughout the year providing optimum root zone temperature, especially during the summer and winter months with cooling and heating modes.
Developed only three years ago, SISGrass has been installed on 80 pitches worldwide, across a variety of sports, including a pitch in Japan for the 2019 Rugby World Cup, Lambeau Field USA for the NFL’s Green Bay Packers, St Andrews Golf Club and The Oval.
SISGrass has also been installed at FC Barcelona’s training ground. A club spokesman said:
SISGrass installation was quick, efficient and seamless. The SISGrass yarn is soft and resilient with a very natural appearance, installed with laser precision which improves pitch stability and consistency. The faster surface recovery means more training sessions and matches to our teams, which has been proven on our two year old SISGrass training area.
We will definitely recommend SISGrass to other sports clubs, where pitch performance is key.
For more information on SISGrass and SIS Pitches, watch a video here.
Image: Luzhniki Stadium