THE new artificial turf surface of the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium is about to be completed and will be ready for operation very soon.
Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) executive director Atty. Guillermo Iroy told Spin.ph that Saturday is the target completion of the project, although on Friday, workers were still hurrying to put the markings on the field, even as the PSC official stressed that goals will be installed the following day.
The Rizal pitch is now patterned after the likes of Emperador Stadium, BGC field, and Far Eastern University-Diliman as football venues with artificial turf within Metro Manila.
The PSC renovated the field by installing natural grass in 2010, hosting several games of the Philippine Azkals, including the 2012 Suzuki Cup semifinals against Malaysia.
But the field deteriorated over the years due to a number of football and even rugby events, prompting the government sports agency to change the surface.
Iroy said the installation of the artificial turf and all-weather surface football field is expected to boost the capacity of the venue to host more sports events in the future, while generating savings for the PSC in terms of maintaining the field compared to when it was still made of natural grass.
“We expect to save up to 70 percent in maintenance cost. This field is maintenance-free and can be used for 24 hours,” Iroy bared.
The PSC executive director also said the field will not be used immediately as PSC chairman Ricardo Garcia is planning to use it for the first time to hold a football festival for kids after the Philippine National Games from May 16 to 25 through the help of the consulates of Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay.