Pitch will be fine for Swansea

IPSWICH Town’s head groundsman Alan Ferguson says he is fully confident that the Portman Road pitch will once again be playable for Saturday’s visit of Swansea in the Championship.

Around 120 tonnes of snow had to be excavated from the pitch to make sure last night’s Carling Cup quarter-final match against West Brom went ahead, with the club’s high-tech teflon-coated covers able to prevent ground frost in tempatures as low as minus six degrees celsius.

There has since been a heavy night of snowfall, but Ferguson is confident the covers will once again do their job and that his team can clear the snow in time for Saturday’s vist of Swansea (12.45pm).

With the game being televised by Sky Sports the club are expecting a lower attendance and have therefore closed the lowest sections of the stands in order to use them as an area to dump any snow that falls on the matchday itself.

“There won’t be any danger from the pitch side of things,” said Ferguson. “We have one of the most advanced cover systems around.

“There has been several centimetres of snowfall overnight, but the forecast is that we won’t get anything near as much in the build-up to the weekend.

“The clear-up operation is underway, we have got some help in from local golf club groundskeepers and ground staff from local private schools to help with the pitch, while there will be plenty more working on the surrounding areas of the ground.”

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– For full story, including Ferguson’s memories of the one and only game he has ever had postponed at Portman Road in his 14 years at the club, see tomorrow’s EADT and Evening Star.

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