Jump to content
Cornwall Football Forum

St Stephens Boro's Plastic Pitch at Salt Mill


Guest thebigfella
 Share

Recommended Posts

Guest thebigfella

I seem to remember reading a pretty lengthy debate about the use of the 3G plastic pitch at Salt Mill for ECL games this season.

Now we're a few games in, does anyone have any further comments on how it plays, what it's like to play on and how they think it may influence the outcome of games, or even the league?

Personally, I was pretty open minded about it, until one of my youth sides played a couple of friendlies on it recently. They really enjoyed it and I have to say, for junior football and for training, it is superb. However, at the time I thought, particularly when wet, or during heavy rain, that the ball behaved very differently to how it would on grass. I remember saying to someone that I would hate to play a mens game on it! It's very tight (I would even say small), and if your touch isn't good and sharp, there could be a few problems.

Any views? Or changed views?

I have actually changed mine. I think it's bad for senior football. Very bad.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it's bad for senior football. Very bad.

Wasn´t expecting that as the punch line! :D

But after all the stink last season, would be good to hear from the clubs who have now experienced playing on it. Out of 8 league games, six have been home .... interesting that, you might have thought they could have saved a few for when the weather gets a bit dodgy!

St Stephens Borough 4 3 Holsworthy

St Stephens Borough 1 6 Plymouth Parkway

St Stephens Borough 4 2 Lifton

St Stephens Borough 10 1 St Columb Major

St Stephens Borough 1 1 St Blazey Saturday, 13 September 2008

St Stephens Borough 4 3 Camelford

What about the thoughts too of ECPL and the Chairman - St Blazey have played there now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think we must first remember that St Stephens Borough earned the right to play in the ECPL. Secondly they had to play somewhere as Warfelton was unnaceptable. Thirdly the CCFA made the bizarre decision to allow senior football on that type of surface.

So what have I noticed when watching some games. First tackling is almost non existant and when players do slide in they suffer sometimes awful plastic burn marks. Likewise when a player challenges for a header he is thinking more about how he lands than actually winning the ball. Again when you come crashing donw you are actually thinking about how to avoid injury And we all know if you don't fully commit to a header or a tackle then that is how you get injured.

Some of the football played on that pitch and yes it is small looks good but the point I'm trying to make is that these are not practice games. Players are thinking to much about the playing conditions than their own ability on such surfaces. It would appear the ground would need another inch or so of rubber on it to make it a little more safe. But would that then deaden the pitch. There is the fact that there it will be ways be exciting for watching goals being scored. In six games 40 goals have flown past the goalkeepers. But is that down to the surface. Is it down to teams and players being unsure about closing down players because they have to stay on their feet and don't want to get injured or is it down to the true flat surface that players can kick through the ball to fire in some great shots.

Indeed watching the games makes you think of practice matches. Great for training and learning different skills but it is not the type of surafce you would expect for a normal football pitch.

What you cannot do is blame St Stephens Borough. They were given the opportunity and the CCFA said it was fine. I don't think they actually want to be there but now they are in couild they gain promotion. If so what then?

There was plenty of discussion about the pitch pre season but now that it is allowed will there be more pitches like it being allowed for senior football. If so, what effect will it have. The teams play nice football because some good players seem only to worry about the injury factor. While the lesser teams miss out on a fair contest because they don't have those types of players. This talking point will go on for a long time. My only question is, is it fair and is it safe?? In other words any player will know that if he does not concentrate fully on his game but (and we have all doen it) starts thinking more about the playing conditions then he has a problem.

It is an intersting point raised but until or unless the CCFA ban this type of surface for senior or even junior football then the problem will only get worse.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So having read your comments ECPL, would I be right in saying that you don´t seem too impressed with the surface - in that as much it makes it difficult for the players to express themselves in the normal way and therefore is not a true reflection of what we know the game is like when on grass.

Could it be a case of the East Cornwall League looking again at the situation in the summer and this time ruling against the surface and therefore telling the club in question to find somewhere else? Or is a fait accompli and the League is forever powerless?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i personally think that the 3g surface is excellent.

ok, i haven't had any dealings with it in the wet and would expect the ball to skid a little more but i don't see it as a bad thing...... more...... adding a little extra excitement.

Personally i have played on some very bad pitches such as chard in the screwfix league, that one is steeper than holden hill!!! also the meavy lane pitch at yelverton, the calfs ache after playin on that one too!

A large, flat, grass surface obviously is what everyone loves but the 3g is good for its purpose.

:SM_carton:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Blackshirt

I have done several games on this type of pitch in fact the same one St. S B use its not my cup of tea and quite a few player say they don`t like it. My personnal choose is football should be played on grass all weather pitches are for small sided football or training and not senior football , but as I said that my personnal choose. I`m sorry its not right to play on plastic. I do hope St. Stephens Bor. the best a hope they find a grass pitch sometime.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest ajlongcallington

When the 3g was installed at the Callington Sports College we were advised that we could play senior football on it by the CCFA - our thirds played on it in two pre-season friendlies and we train on the surface - would agree that it is not St Stephens Borough's fault that they play on that surface - if there is any blame, and I am still undecided on this, then it would lie with the CCFA for sanctioning games on this surface.

I think we have to wait until this season has finished before we can judge properly as to the merits of the surface.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Blackshirt

ALAN i COULDN

Sorry Let Me Try again. Alan I couldn`t agree more St. S.B are not to blame thety just want to play football the CCFA should of thought about this dicision longer. I hope St. S.B are able to game a grass pitch by next season but as I know Saltash well there ain`t much around .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can't comment on the St S B pitch, however, the 3G at Newquay Tretherras that is used by Premier Sixes in the Duchy League is a similar surface. The ball does skid away and the bounce is very different to grass. In my opinion its harder on the calf muscles and there is no give in the ground which if you catch a stud can cause injury. Sliding tackles should be avoided as you're likely to lose the skin on your leg if you treat the surface like grass. All in all I'm not a great fan and personally prefer grass. I believe the home team is gaining an advantage as they are used to playing on the surface :SM_carton_y:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

the pitch should never have been allowed. first of all with slide tackles not possible without skin burns the game is no longer 11 a side football full stop, seen as slide tackles are a part of the game. it is not st stephens borough's fault but they are in my opinion gaining a big advantage in usung the pitch that they have trained and played on so much. The pitch does not behave like grass at all and to play well on this surface takes time and practice. seen as other teams are used to playing on grass they stand a clear disadvantage. I believe people will find borough's home record will be much better than their away record by the end of the season.

to add to that moulded studs are allowed but metal are not, so any1 who usually plays the season wearing metal studs must now buy moulded as well just to play 1 game a season on the 3g

Link to comment
Share on other sites

For me Personally i dont think there is anything wrong with playing on a 3G surface in a 11 a side match.

Sure, St Stephens have a slight advantage, but maybe , just maybe they have been winning the majority of there home games because they are a good side.

The surface in itself is decent, Flat, no divits, etc...if your footballing team then surely you would be delighted..i know i was when i played there earlier this season.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest st george9

Im not sure of how much of a big advantage we gain on the pitch as some of are players are unable to train on it in the week, and others have just returned to the team after only one game on it..as foz points out if you are a good football team who like to play the ball around you will love it.

every home team has an advantage,if you pitch slopes on one side ,or is small or grass is left long the home team has an advantage as they play every week on it

And as for the boot point,do players now only have one pair of stud boots?? there must be alot of blisters up and down devon and cornwall

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have read the comments re St Stephens Borough with Interest ,

No doubt there is a element of sour grapes from some as the new kids on the block have had a very good start to the first season in this league and I for one expected the flack to fly .

Given the option we would love to play on grass with all the faculties required for membership of the league but in Saltash it is not available .

I t would also be a great help to the club expense wise not to play on the 3g surface costing somewhere in the region of £2000.00 for this season

Basic find us a home ground inSaltash that meets the requirements and we will play on it but would we still subject to sour grapes just because we have a strong team no doubt if we continued to win a further list of gripes would appear .

such is life ! :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

should never be allowed to play league matches on it...cant tackle on it,the bounce is rediculous..hopefully they can sort out a grass pitch! boro wont gain much of an advantage...its just a shite surface for matches!!!!!easier for refs tho..dont need to worry about slide tackles!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have read the comments re St Stephens Borough with Interest ,

No doubt there is a element of sour grapes from some as the new kids on the block have had a very good start to the first season in this league and I for one expected the flack to fly .

Given the option we would love to play on grass with all the faculties required for membership of the league but in Saltash it is not available .

I t would also be a great help to the club expense wise not to play on the 3g surface costing somewhere in the region of £2000.00 for this season

Basic find us a home ground inSaltash that meets the requirements and we will play on it but would we still subject to sour grapes just because we have a strong team no doubt if we continued to win a further list of gripes would appear .

such is life ! :D

'Sour Grapes'...elaborate?!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i played on our one up at college a couple of years ago, good way to get around slide tackles is put vaseline on your legs, people would still slide on a pitch middle of august, dried mud everywhere, get burns on that!! they're good pitches but a team that trains on it every week gets an advantage as theyre used to the surface, maybe the downfall will be when they play on a normal pitch and don't expect the bounce etc of the ball!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest The Old Man

We played St Stephens Borough on their plastic pitch yesterday. They fully deserved their 6-2 victory.

St Stephens are a very decent side, only St Blazey have impressed me more so far (can't comment on Parkway as we have not played them).

However, THIS JUST AIN'T FOOTBALL!!!!! :blink:

Before we kicked off, the referee explained that the ball was not fully inflated, as if it were, the bounce would be too high :wacko: New Rule????? :SM_carton:

But as from previous posts, the pitch is most definitely an advantage. The longer the season goes on the more they become accustomed to the unpredictability of the bounce, one minute bouncing up the next skidding on. They were far more aware of how to play this "version of football"...more like a five-a-side system ...almost a non-contact sport as tackling and slide tackling in particular are almost non-existant.

I'm sure the Borough would be happier playing on grass themselves, and I certainly don't blame them. They were indeed a very hospitable Club and very sporting too. However, I believe, the League should see this as an experiment gone wrong and insist that the club find new facilities in time for the start of next season.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Postie Pidge

How inadequate was Warfelton?

I know it wasn't roped/post and railed off as per senior requirements but was there anything other than that?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It needed tending but that was the job of the local council. In other words long grass. And the changing rooms although along way away, and strangley not so far as at the Salt Mill were horrible. Apart from that no different than Polperro but without the ski slope. I'm not sue if it was big enough

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Frank le tank

Warfelton wasn't a bad pitch but wouldn't have been suitable for senior football. As a boro player i dont really know what all the fuss is about, if teams were coming down to Salt Mill and beating us i bet there wouldn't be half as much talk about whether it allows an advantage.

The fact is if you are a better team than us you will beat us on this surface or any other type of surface or pitch as Plymouth Parkway proved at the beginning of the season (although i feel it will be a closer game when we meet again as we have only been at full strength for the last 2 games!) haha.

I look forward to welcomings you to Le Stad De Salt Mill this season.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Firstly I would like to thank everyone for taking such an interest in our club & our facilities.

Secondly, the pitch at Warfelton is not up to the standard of senior football. Certainly the changing rooms arent up to standard, especially the referees room which is shared with the referee officiating the youth game on the adjoining pitch & has no shower facilities.

As a club we looked at every possible option that was open to us and the only approved senior pitch that was available to us was Saltmill.

As I have posted previously technology and time do not go backwards. This type of pitch is being used by clubs at a higher level than ECPL.

(It is also being used by Premier Sixes in the Duchy League and I dont see the Duchy forum filled with posts from clubs moaning about it.)

Parkway beat us 6-1 at Saltmill - they found no problems with it.

If clubs come to Saltmill with a positive attitude realising its a pitch where you can play football then they will do well - just ask Parkway.

Certainly Polperro were more than in the game on Saturday, especially in the first half.

The pitch is approved for senior football and in all fairness as soon as clubs come to terms with that the better. Certainly we will not be on this forum moaning about pitches that are too bobbly, boggy, slopey, where the grass is to long, where there are divits, where it is frozen rock hard etc .....

At least we can guarrantee a flat, even playing surface regardless of the time of year.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We play St Stephens in the Senior cup in a couple of weeks & am I right in thinking the game will be played on a 3G if so I think this game should be played on a neutral pitch..................only joking I won't mind an even playing surface with a true roll....I haven't actually played a game on a 3G but I have trained on one & didnt mind it...Oh where is the ground & Salt Mill..& are St Stephens & St Stephens Borough one in the same??? Sorry to sound thick but dont follow football up there???

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Regardless of which team play on the 3g surface i think the topic is whether players are comfortable playing on it at senior level. I have played at Saltmill several times and think it's totally unacceptable to play competitive matches on (my opinion). When wet the ball becomes unpredictable after bouncing and the surface becomes slippery (again all my opinion). What i totally disagree with is if an appointed ref is deflating a ball prior to kick off to accomodate the the pitch. Also, how would a club stand if all players turned up with metal studs?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

after playing st stephens boro for the past 5 years, i think it doesnt matter what they play on they are a good side, and they were always gonna do well in their new league. Im sure most of the teams in the duchy prem could challenge for that title anyway along with st stephens boro. but it must give them some advantage as they get to know the surface, but the fact that some people are so against it they have most teams beaten before they even kick off. We used to experince that at Edgcumbe when we played at maker church - no facilities and a pitch covered in sheep xxxx, we turned prem teams over in the cup year after year as we were making our way up because they pretty much refused to play on the pitch.

Fact is, they play on it, no games will ever get called off, and if your a good footballing team such as parkway then you will enjoy playing on it.

I think enough teams now train on that type of surface now anyway with no complaints

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i play for premier sixes in newquay and i have found it has improved my game loads, i havent got to worry bout divits or anything like that, i dont hear no1 moan about our pitch but loads of players moan their own pitch, as for getting plastic burns i used to get them playing on hard pitches when we havent had no rain so wearing something like cycling shorts underneath will stop that!! 1 big positive u wont have any games called off as the pitch has been cut up from the week b4 or because a bit of rain

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I played at Salt Mill earlier this season for Plymouth Parkway and thought the pitch was excellent. I didnt really find any problems with the bounce and diving around was fine.

I don't really see what all the fuss is about and i would have to agree with people who say that other teams are just lookin for an excuse. I do think that it only suits sides that like to play a passing game but that can happen when you turn up and have to play on a smaller pitch.

If your a footballing team and are better than your opposition you should win the game that fact does not change due to this type of pitch.

st stephens borough are a good team and will do well this season both home and away. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

after playing there yesterday for portreath my views are that st stephens boro are a good side and the size of the pitch is fine but on a negative side i have a really nasty cut and burn on my right leg and most of our side were wincing in the showers with burns on knees and legs . i personally would not like to play week in week out on that surface. best of luck to them in the next round

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...