Eastleigh cancel Portsmouth and Newport County friendlies amid new pitch concerns

Eastleigh's Silverlake Stadium
Eastleigh have cancelled two further friendlies against Portsmouth and Newport County

National League Eastleigh have cancelled pre-season fixtures against Portsmouth and Newport because of issues with their newly re-laid pitch.

Saturday's visit of AFC Wimbledon was also called off amid concerns over the condition of the new turf.

"We can't get enough water onto the pitch at the moment," chief executive Mark Jewell told BBC Radio Solent.

"Exposure to quite a large police bill if the game didn't go ahead was in the back of our mind."

The Spitfires were due to play south coast rivals Pompey on Saturday and League Two Newport on 22 July.

"Remedial work as a result of extreme heat will need to be completed upon 15-20% of the newly laid turf," Jewell added.

"Unless we have a heatwave of 50 degrees I can't see the pitch not being ready for the Sheffield United game (on 28 July)."

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