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Last Updated: Monday, 7 February, 2005, 17:29 GMT
Pitch damage casts Wales shadow
The poor state of the pitch is visible as Gavin Henson takes the winning kick against England
Millennium Stadium, Cardiff
Wednesday, 9 February
Kick-off: 2000 GMT
Live: Five Live, Radio Wales and Radio Cymru and this website
Millennium Stadium staff have moved quickly to try to repair the damaged pitch ahead of Wales' international football friendly on Wednesday.

The pitch, which is brought in on pallets, cut up badly during Saturday's rugby win over England by Wales.

Stadium general manager Paul Sergeant has suspended the pitch contractors as he races to create a playable surface.

New pitch consultants will now try to make sure the surface is suitable for the match against Hungary.

"What happened during the game last Saturday was unfortunate and embarrassing. We can't hide from the facts and we can't make excuses," said Sergeant.

"What we have done since the game ended is discuss the issues with our contractors, introduce a new team of experts who have experience of managing our palletised system and looked for the best possible solution for Wednesday night's game.

"We will be working through the night on Tuesday and all day Wednesday to ensure the pitch is in the best possible condition."

Thankfully the rugby team, whose RBS Six Nations win was the first over England in Cardiff since 1993, are now away for their next three matches and not scheduled to play in the Millennium Stadium until 19 March.

But the Carling Cup final between Liverpool and Chelsea is scheduled for Cardiff on Sunday, 27 February.

"We will continue to consult with the Sports Turf Research Institute and the Football League ahead of the Carling Cup final," Sergeant added.

"There are technical reasons behind some of the failures of the pitch system last weekend and we will be doing all we can to find the right solutions to them.

"The best stadium in the world must have a suitable playing surface for all its events."




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Interview: Hungary manager Lothar Matthaeus



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