Sheffield Eagles know that size matters and it will be a tight fit when they kick-off at Owlerton Stadium next season.
Club officials have measured the pitch area in the centre of the greyhound track and it meets the standards needed for a professional team. Coach Mark Aston is confident that all will be ready for their return to the stadium where the club began in 1984.
“Getting everything ready at Owlerton is going well and we’ve checked the pitch and it fits. That’s the most important thing,” said Aston. “We are investing money in the pitch to make it a surface we can play attacking rugby on. We’ll adapt what we do and use the pitch to our advantage.”
The playing area will be narrower than the Eagles would like but they may not need to cover part of the track in goal areas behind the try line. A decision is also still to be made on adding covered outside seating in a stand on a part of the terracing currently not used.
“When I played there years ago there was matting in the corners but this time we may just squeeze everything in,” added Aston. “There are a few challenges, the stand with outside seating and the changing rooms but I’m confident by the end of January we will be ready to play.”