Australia news August 21, 2014

MCG turf to be relaid ahead of World Cup

ESPNcricinfo staff

The MCG's 20,000 square metres of turf will be replaced in October in its biggest resurfacing since the overhaul undertaken after the 2004 AFL season in preparation for the 2006 Commonwealth Games.

Beginning two days after the AFL grand final on September 27, the work will be completed in the month-long window between the AFL and cricket seasons. Around 150 truckloads of turf will reportedly be shipped out and brought in as the venue prepares to host the 2015 World Cup final in March.

MCC arenas operations manager Tony Gordon said the replacement was necessary considering the ground was a "high-use" venue. "The life span of any natural turf sports surface is not infinite and, while our artificial lighting system has significantly reduced the need for turf replacement, the MCG is a high-use venue," Gordon was quoted as saying by AAP. "Strategic turf replacement is crucial to ensuring our playing surface is among the best in the world."

Ten portable cricket pitches will also be installed during the resurfacing, to be completed in time for the first Sheffield Shield fixture of the season between Victoria and New South Wales beginning on October 31.