The 2012-13 season ended on May 19 for Wigan Athletic but for the ground staff at the DW Stadium the work continued as Head Groundsman Ian Forshaw (pictured right) and his team started the process of getting ready for the kick-off of the 2013-14 season in August.
“Straight after the last game of the season we took 10mm off the top of the pitch,” said Forshaw.
“We clean it up to make sure that it will perform well for the duration of the next season.
It’s always important to make sure there’s a good base on the pitch, we always say it’s like a good pizza, if you get the base right then the topping should follow quite naturally.
“Last year we took 25mm off but it was in good condition at the end of this season which is why we only had to take 10mm.”
A helping hand in recent days has been the sun and Forshaw says more warmth will do the pitch a world of good.
“We could do with the next three weeks being full of sunshine, it would be perfect conditions for the pitch.
“It comes along quite quickly and we’re lucky that we’ve had some sun recently because the seed thrives off the warmth.
“We’ll feed the pitch again soon which will make the shaded areas grow at the same rate as the sections open to sunlight.
“If the growth continues at the rate it has been in the past few days then we’ll be looking at a good green DW pitch very soon.”
The on-going regeneration of the pitch takes a lot of hard work but Forshaw is confident that everything will be perfect come August.
“It’s just an on-going project now to get the grass up in the space of four weeks for when Wigan Warriors play their next game on it and then we can keep it maintained.
“It’s a process that we’d like to be able to do every year but there are time constraints because of the period between the end of one season and the start off the next one.
“Once the ground work has been done though things usually run smoothly meaning we can be ready in time for kick off of the coming season.”