Ransomes Jacobsen, the Ipswich-based turf maintenance equipment manufacturer, supplied a selection of mowers to prepare the pitches at the African Cup of Nations football tournament, which took place in Angola back in January.
Thirteen Ransomes Mastiff walk-behind mowers were shipped to Angola for the competition, supplied by Support in Sport (SIS) of Maryport in Cumbria, who won the contract to construct the pitches at the four new stadia used to host Africa's foremost football competition. SIS also constructed 10 other pitches as part of their contract with the Angolan authorities.
Firma Thomas, Ransomes Jacobsen's distributor in Belgium, also supplied two Jacobsen TR3 ride-on cylinder mowers along with four compact New Holland tractors to help maintain the pitches.
Samuel Eto'o, the captain of Cameroun, who also plays for Inter Milan in Italy's Serie A described the pitches as 'the best he has ever played on at any African Nations Cup'.
The final was played at the impressive Estádio 11 de Novembro in Luanda, where over 50,000 spectators saw Egypt beat Ghana 1-0 to retain the trophy for the third consecutive time. Supersub Mohamed Nagy came off of the substitutes' bench to score the only goal of the final in the 81st minute and take his tally in the competition to five.
David Withers, managing director of Ransomes Jacobsen said, "Yet again, another major sporting competition was played on surfaces prepared by our mowers. The Ransomes Mastiff has been in production for over 50 years and has become the mower of choice for stadium pitch preparation across the globe. It has prepared sports surfaces at the Olympics, football and rugby world cup finals, international cricket test matches, but can, and is, also used by local sports clubs around the world."
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One of the 13 Ransomes Mastiffs that were used by SIS to prepare the pitches at the African Cup of Nations. Pictured at Estádio 11 de Novembro in Luanda, the venue for the final of the competition.