Grass proves greener away from WIN Stadium

Caitlin Foord has found the back of the net five times in the last two games for Sydney. Picture: ADAM McLEAN
Caitlin Foord has found the back of the net five times in the last two games for Sydney. Picture: ADAM McLEAN


Wollongong football fans will again miss out on W-League action at WIN Stadium after Sunday's fixture between Sydney FC and Brisbane Roar was relocated due to problems with the playing surface.

Venues NSW contacted the Sky Blues last week to inform the club the pitch was unsuitable to host the double-header, also featuring Sydney's youth league outfit against the Central Coast Mariners.

"Essentially, despite careful planning, weather conditions over December weren't as expected so the soil wasn't basically warm enough to generate growth and create a safe field. So unfortunately, down to players safety that decision was made," a spokesperson for Venues NSW said.

During the summer, ground staff at WIN Stadium remove rye grass from the surface to allow couch to endure the rigours of the hotter months.

As the playing surface is still in this removal faze, ground and operation staff as well as Venues NSW, deemed the pitch unplayable.

With Sydney FC in superb form, led by Lake Illawarra star Caitlin Foord who has scored five goals in her last two games, Sunday's fixture will be played at Sydney United Sports Centre, Edensor Park.

The change means for the second time this season the region has lost an opportunity to see the premier women's competition in action, with the Sydney Derby in December also moved elsewhere because of scheduling clash.

Coincidentally, that Sydney FC fixture against the Wanderers will take place tonight at Jubilee Oval, with a Sky Blues spokesperson confirming there were no plans for a replacement match at WIN Stadium later this season.

"It is very disappointing because we have a large supporter base down there who we are always looking to get behind us and to back us by taking our fixtures, whichever they may be," the spokesperson said.

"It is unfortunate that these things have come up. Hopefully they enjoyed the double-header the pre-season friendly earlier in the season.

In addition to the Sky Blues commitment, Venues NSW maintained their support for the club.

"We are still looking forward to working with Sydney FC in the future and they were quite understanding of the situation," the spokesperson said.


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