In the current football season twelve clubs in the Jupiler League (Dutch First Division) will play their home matches on synthetic turf, eleven of these on synthetic turf fibres from TenCate Grass. Six clubs in the Dutch Premier League also have synthetic turf, five with synthetic turf fibres from TenCate Grass.
SBV Excelsior is already familiar with playing on synthetic turf at home as there has been synthetic turf in the Woudestein Stadium since 2010. ‘We have now opted for a new turf surface,’ explained the general director Ferry de Haan earlier to a local news station. ‘It will be a faster field, without the black rubber granules that you saw flying up every time.’ The choice fell on GreenFields® MX Trimension, a woven synthetic turf system that utilizes the synthetic turf fibres of TenCate Grass. It has been approved according to the FIFA 2 Star standard. The infill consists of green coated granules of synthetic rubber (SBR). As the grass yarns are packed closely together, less infill is necessary.
The first kick-off was on Saturday 28 June and introduced players and trainer Marinus Dijkhuizen of Excelsior to the GreenFields® MX Trimension system. They are well pleased with the attractiveness, evenness and natural appearance of the surface. The colours are brighter and the (sprayed) white line markings look fresher than before. That Saturday general director Ferry de Haan, head of communication Vincent Wernke and mascot Woutje praised the new playing field in similar terms.
Not only do the first team and the youth teams train and play on the field, but social activities also take place. ‘There is something to do nearly every day,’ says Vincent Wernke. And just as in the Polman Stadium in Almelo, towards the end of a match the youngsters are already dreaming of kicking a ball around on the field come the final whistle.
Talks about replacing the existing synthetic field in Woudestein Stadium began even before promotion to the top division was an fact. ‘Nothing beats a perfect natural grass surface, but where can you find one of those nowadays?’ says general manager Ferry de Haan. ‘We are a progressive club that’s keen to develop talent. We got talking to one another through the tender. The advance of synthetic grass is a good development. The conditions are always the same for everyone. We want to go along with this and contribute to the development.’