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Croke Park pitch surface facing repair work after bumper summer gigs

Updated: Wednesday, 17 Feb 2016 16:03 | Comments

Bruce Springsteen will play two sold-out gigs at Croke Park on 27 and 29 May
Bruce Springsteen will play two sold-out gigs at Croke Park on 27 and 29 May

Stadium Director Peter McKenna has admitted Croke Park will have to be relaid after the Bruce Springsteen and Beyonce concerts this summer, as the damage the bumper crowds will do to the pitch "is not recoverable".

Springsteen's gigs, on 27 and 29 May, take up two of the three dates allowed at Croke Park every year and sold out in two hours. With pop queen Beyonce taking centre stage on 9 July, around 240,000 fans will traipse through the gates at HQ.

The Leinster SFC final is pencilled in for 17 July, and ground staff are facing a race against time to have the surface in tip-top condition.

However McKenna is confident they will repair the damage in time for the provincial showpiece.

"We have a good team here, but you can never be complacent about these things.”

“Where the stage is and the mojo barriers, it is not recoverable. We can't replace patches of the pitch,” McKenna told Star Sport.

“We can't do a little square metre because the thing wouldn't knit together properly so you'd have indentations and hollows.

“So, we take the view to strip back to where the last damage will be. It's an evolved process but not without risk.

“I'm confident but you wouldn't be arrogant on it. Confidence is based on the fact we have an exceptional team of individuals here.

“Yeah, if they weren't around, you'd get fearful, but we've done this for years and it's worked well. We have a good team here, but you can never be complacent about these things.”

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