February 6, 2002

SCG finals in lap of the gods

AAP

Staff are working around the clock to prepare the Sydney Cricket Ground for the second one-day international final between South Africa and New Zealand but a decision won't be made until match day.

A spokeswoman for the SCG Trust said today the persistent rain in Sydney meant the second final on Friday and, if needed, the third match on Sunday were still in jeopardy.

"We're in the lap of the gods with the rain really," she said.

"All we can do is condense five days of work into two, which we're now doing because we're able to bring a roller in and work under a marquee.

"We're just doing the best that we can at the moment. Unfortunately there is no definitive answer."

The spokeswoman said ground staff had lost two days of work due to the downpour on Monday and Tuesday.

Exhausted SCG curator Tom Parker was unavailable for comment as he grabbed a cat-nap before resuming duties again later tonight.

Nine people had worked on the pitch overnight with heat lamps, blowers and rollers in an attempt to dry it out in time for Friday's match.

The Australian Cricket Board announced yesterday if the rain-soaked SCG could not host its scheduled two finals then the winner of the first clash today between the Kiwis and the Proteas would claim the trophy.

Rain is forecast to continue until Sunday.