An update on the pitch...
The ground staff have been working tirelessly against the elements in a bid to ensure fixtures can be fulfilled, although, as seen against Blackpool on New Year’s Day, the weather has now had a visible impact on the surface, as they fight an uphill battle.
This week, this club has invested in rain covers to help better protect the pitch, as well as a blotter machine. These arrived at the Crown Oil Arena on Friday afternoon. The frost covers already owned by the club were frost covers only and offered no protect against the rain. Frost covers are designed not to hold water as they are made of perforated material.
We’d like to take this opportunity to thank Rochdale Hornets for their co-operation in moving their pre-season friendly against Oldham RLFC from Sunday to Wednesday, allowing the ground staff extra time to prepare the pitch. This is a huge positive for the ongoing health of the pitch.
The weather forecast between now and Tuesday night’s game against Lincoln City is favourable, giving the pitch a chance to recover. There are no concerns over this fixture at this moment in time, thanks to the extra preparation time afforded by Rochdale Hornets.
As supporters may remember, the club invested in grow lights in February 2017, and these have proved to be an excellent investment. The lights are being used regularly in the goal mouth areas of the pitch, meaning these areas are still in a very good condition and are in a better shape than they ever have been.
Looking further ahead, a full renovation will be undertaken this summer, with the club returning to a better standard of fibre-sand pitch. The Crown Oil Arena currently has a soil based pitch, which was laid in February last year, and has an 18-month life-span. Given the time of year, the only option at that time, when the pitch was in rapid decline, was to lay a soil based pitch.
The club will, of course, keep supporters up to date with the summer renovations. In the meantime, the ground staff will continue working tirelessly to ensure games go ahead.