Gabba surface cops spray - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Gabba surface cops spray

Laine Clark 22/04/2011 12:05:34 PM Comments (0)

Days after being criticised for being too hard, the maligned Gabba surface is again under the spotlight - for being too wet.

Instead of savouring a drought-breaking 13-point AFL win over the Brisbane Lions, St Kilda coach Ross Lyon could not hide his disappointment over the state of the Gabba on Thursday night.

It came after claims this week the hard Gabba ground had contributed to Gold Coast Suns captain Gary Ablett's injury problems.

Lyon cheekily suggested Gabba staff had reacted to Ablett's complaints ahead of the Easter Thursday showdown.

He accused Gabba staff of using sprinklers, ensuring the game became a "slog".

"The condition really surprised me, to be honest," Lyon said.

"It hasn't rained for two days. Clearly the sprinklers were on the ground this morning to soften the was like it had been raining, so that's disappointing.

"It certainly wasn't just dew because we rolled up and it was wet underfoot.

"Maybe it's an overreaction to the hardness and (Gary) Ablett.

"I think we've got a right to expect if it hasn't rained for two days to be a bit better than that."

Lions coach Michael Voss had been forced to defend the Gabba surface earlier this week and was at it again after the tight loss.

When told about Lyon's complaints, Voss said: "It is humidity, that is what it actually is."

Lyon said the surface ensured what was supposed to be an Easter Thursday blockbuster became "unattractive".

"I think it just became a slog, slippery, wet - it was just unattractive," he said.

"No one could take the ball or kick it or execute.

"I think the conditions played a strong part."

But asked if the club would make an official complaint about the ground, Lyon said: "Oh, we don't complain."

Lyon and Ablett aren't the first to question the Gabba surface.

In December, Suns recruit and former Lion Jared Brennan blamed the Gabba's controversial cricket pitch surface for a serious ankle injury he sustained last year.

The Gabba's hardness has been investigated in the past by the AFLPA after complaints from Collingwood, Geelong and the Western Bulldogs.

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