Pontypridd to replace Sardis Road pitch

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Merthyr rugby player Teri Gee suffered 3G pitch burns

Pontypridd will replace the 3G artificial pitch at Sardis Road after concerns were raised over its safety.

Merthyr players complained of friction burns after their Welsh Cup semi-final game against RGC 1404 on 25 March.

World Rugby, the Welsh Rugby Union, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and pitch contractors all inspected the surface.

Pontypridd confirmed a decision has now been reached and a new surface will be laid in time for the Welsh Premiership season opener at the end of August.

"The situation over the past three months has been far from satisfactory," Pontypridd director Jack Bayliss told the club website.

"We have been denied the use of our pitch for long periods whilst testing and investigations went on, with which we fully complied, but without being able to push for a final decision.

"We have been unable to make any definitive statements whilst this process went on, with the situation being a volatile and a sensitive one with so many parties involved, up to the highest levels of world rugby.

"We can only apologise to our supporters, our shareholders and partners for the delay in reaching this decision, but which was out of our hands."

After the concerns raised by the MerthyR players, the WRU carried out an initial inspection and Pontypridd were given permission to play RGC 1404 on the pitch on 6 May at the end of last season.

Pontypridd spent £500,000 on the original 3G pitch, which was first used in September 2016.

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