Brisbane Roar’s Suncorp Stadium has the best pitch in the A-League, according to the players in Australia. Professional Footballers Australia (PFA) had introduced a pitch rating system for the 2009/10 season, and asked all footballers to rate the playing surfaces.
Brendan Schwab, chief executive of Professional Footballers Australia (PFA), presented awards to Queensland’s Minister of Sport Phil Reeves and Suncorp’s Ground Manager Mal Caddies. ‘Mal and his team have done a fantastic job with the Suncorp surface this season. We often hear that maintaining the quality of the playing surface is difficult in multi-use venues. However, Mal’s team has demonstrated that this does not have to be the case.’
Reeves, accepting the award on behalf of Stadiums Queensland, thanked the players: ‘It’s great to receive this feedback from A-League players about the quality of the venues they play at in Queensland. This is great recognition of all for the hard work that goes into preparing these pitches week in week out.’
‘Obviously it is important that in the lead up to the FIFA World Cup our top players are playing on world class surfaces. Every footballer will tell you that the quality of the match surface will affect the quality of the game, so I couldn’t be more pleased with the efforts of the ground staff in ensuring our footballers are given the best chance of success.’
The PFA introduced the Pitch Rating System to promote quality playing surfaces. The system, designed to ensure first-class football pitches and protect players’ health and safety, rates the playing surfaces of A-League venues based on 4 criteria: (1) overall; (2) hardness; (3) pace; and (4) smoothness. At the conclusion of each match, the visiting captain rates the field based on each criterion by giving a mark out of 5. Suncorp Stadium achieved a season average of 4.3.
Whilst the PFA Pitch Rating System has demonstrated the quality of the Suncorp playing surface, the PFA is disappointed to see some A-League venues struggle to earn a pass mark from the players. Schwab: ‘Clearly the standard of the playing surfaces at EnergyAustralia and Etihad Stadiums require attention. Perhaps they can look to Suncorp’s example in time for next season.’
- Published: 01 March 2010