Pitches at National Stadium being resurfaced

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The square at the National Stadium, Providence, is being resurfaced by the Head Groundsman Wasim Habib and his team.

In August 2016, the square, which has about six pitches, was re-laid for the first time after the Stadium was completed in 2006, in time to host Cricket World Cup matches the following year.

Since the relaying, which has seen an improvement in the balance between bat and ball, Habib said the next step had to be levelling the pitch, and now that it has settled, the resurfacing will allow for proper growth of grass and better runoff of water.

Explaining that the project has started three weeks now, Habib indicated that most of the work is already complete as regards building the pitch to a level and attention now turns to planting grass.

By Monday (October 11), Habib indicated to News Room Sport that they will start planting grass, specifically, Bermuda 77, commonly called Princess, and three days after they can do rolling.

In another six weeks, the pitches should be ready again for competitive cricket.

Head Groundsman at the National Stadium, Wasim Habib (Photo: News Room/October 7, 2021)

“The reason why we did this, is that since we re-laid, we knew we had to do a little bit of top-dressing, but we never knew how much.”

He added, “The water was staying on top of it [pitch] and it is not nice to have water staying on top of the pitch; it slows down the growth of the grass plus you get algae. So, you need to build the pitch and we did it an inch and a half.”

The Head Groundsman further noted that the objective is about quick grass recovery between matches to ensure the wicket [pitch] is not ‘low’ since it rains a lot at Providence.

In July-August, Providence hosted three Twenty20 Internationals between West Indies and Pakistan, but two were a no-result due to rain.

Should Guyana secure the bid to host matches at next year’s ICC Under-19 World Cup, the Stadium – the country’s lone ICC accredited facility – will be a key venue.

An ICC team is expected to revisit in November for the final inspection, after which a pronouncement would be made on whether Guyana has been approved as a host nation.

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