24 November 2008
Athlone Institute of Technology Sports Department recently received the welcome news that the new artificial pitch on the campus had received its FIFA 2 Star Certificate, the first in the country.
The FIFA recommended 2 Star for artificial turf is designed specifically to mirror the playing characteristics of professional football. FIFA final round competitions and top UEFA competitions have the FIFA recommended 2 Star in their respective competition regulations. This in effect means that the surface in Athlone Institute of Technology is of UEFA Champions league and FIFA World Cup finals standard.
Recently, the FAIS interprovincial boy’s competition availed of the pitch and indeed the facility hosted many FAIS provincial and All-Ireland finals last season. Local Athlone & District Schoolboy/Girl League (ADSL) club AC Celtic have partnered with the Institute in utilising the facility and many of the ADSL league academies train and play on this world class pitch.
The Institute complemented the 2 Star facility with an Olympic standard Mondo Athletics Track in a €2.5m investment in sports facilities which included high lux floodlighting on both. The grass soccer pitch in the infield area of the track should be available for use by September 2009 and further plans to provide sand based GAA & Rugby pitches are at an advanced stage with a new high tech sports hall also in the pipeline.
All three of the Institutes teams are well placed in their respective leagues with the men’s first team hoping to retain the CUFL Premier Division West title while the reserve team need one more win the secure the CUFL Division 1 title for the first time ever. The women’s team are in contention for promotion to the Premier Division of the WSCAI league.« Go Back