MCG pitches back in town
Oct 21, 2011
After spending six months in Yarra Park during the AFL season, the 10 portable cricket pitches to be used at the MCG in the 2011/12 season are now safely installed in the centre of the stadium.
The pitches, each weighing approximately 34 tonnes, were brought into the MCG by a huge machine and installed over three nights on October 17, 18 and 19.
View the MCG portable pitch removal video from early this year
The aim of the portable pitch technology is to provide better pitches for cricket as well as minimising or eliminating the muddy centre square for football in winter.
By ‘dropping in’ the cricket pitches and taking them out at the end of the cricket season, it provides the arena greater flexibility to host events throughout the year. It also allows for more mature grass and root systems to develop, untouched by sand or other debris from the football season.
The process has been refined since it was first developed in the late-1990s, with a load-bearing roadway system developed to allow even the biggest trucks and cranes to come onto the ground with minimal damage to the playing surface.
A portable pitch production centre is located in Yarra Park, near Punt Road Oval. While the 2011 AFL season was played, 10 pitches were nurtured for the following summer. They are laid on a concrete slab and provided excellent tracks for installation as required during the cricket season.