The Groundsman

December 2012

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the Groundsman December 2012 year, when I visited the UK, that my ambition to emulate IOG best practices in Sri Lanka really began to take shape." Knowledge transfer Last month, Trevor spent time in the UK in the company of IOG Regional Advisor Andy Clarke, who acted as chaperone to Trevor when visiting a wide range of clubs throughout London and the Home Counties. As a result, Trevor investigated a myriad of playing surfaces and maintenance procedures and visited a number of equipment suppliers, with the sole aim of enhancing his own knowledge to further improve sport turf standards 5,500 miles away. "As well as the need to educate Sri Lanka's sports bodies about the importance of building good-quality playing surfaces, it is equally critical that the authorities know just how vital it is to maintain those surfaces and have groundstaff with the necessary skills," he says. INTERNATIONAL TRAINING & EDUCATION 29 "At the moment, there are only a handful of qualified grounds professionals in Sri Lanka, but with the IOG's help it is my ambition to change that. There are only two very good grounds of international standard – the rugby pitches at the Ratmalana Air Force Base and at the Colombo Racecourse ground – but there are numerous sites, from school level onwards, that employ hundreds of people." According to Trevor, cricket and rugby are the nation's passions: "We play cricket to world standard, but rugby is more popular. We have the grounds to meet the population's demands, but we don't have an abundance of groundscare skills. "Our groundsmanship industry is very much unskilled and labour-intensive – when we seed a pitch, for example, perhaps 30 people plant the grass manually. Trevor Nugawela (right) with Steve Ascott, head groundsman at St Albans School s AgriMetal Grass is prepared in Colombo Tel: 0845 026 0064 THE REAL AIR F RCE READY FOR IMMEDIATE DELIVERY! T: 01759 321 000 · F: 01759 380 130 · Our heavy duty product line of blowers and collectors is packed with features to get the clean up done quickly and efficiently. With the renowned AgriMetal build quality, isn't it time you saw the real air force at work.

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