0 Rugby clubs get pitch advice

Rugby clubs around Kent received tips from the top for looking after their pitches when the RFU's head groundsman visited the county.

Keith Kent has been in charge of the hallowed surface at Twickenham Stadium - home to the England Rugby team - since 2001, and before that he was head groundsman at Manchester United's Old Trafford ground for 15 years.

To tie in with the RFU's focus on 'People and Places', Keith is visiting 96 clubs around the country and his expert advice was offered to Canterbury RFC, Tonbridge Juddians RFC, Leigh RFC, Maidstone RFC and Aylesford Bulls RFC.

Everything was covered from giving a worn-out pitch a good sanding during remedial work in the spring to Keith's recommendations for the best aerator and feed.

"A training field is the workhorse pitch of the club," he said. "There may be some costs in the short term for good care, but in the long term the club will be the winner."

Each club also receives a written report and Maidstone's honorary secretary Tom Challis said: "I thought we might get a sharp intake of breath and some very expensive solutions.

"Instead the report recognised the wear and tear that pitches are subjected to and also the financial constraints faced by junior clubs."

Darren Grasby, director of rugby at Tonbridge Juddians said: "The visit by Keith Kent to our club was invaluable. The clubs pitches are maintained by the council who do a fantastic job but Keith was able to identify key ways in which we can really improve our playing surface.

"Both the club and local council are extremely grateful for the excellent advice given."

Source:-Kent On Line

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