World Rugby member unions have received a shot in the arm as World Rugby has agreed to accept 50mm carpets for synthetic turf rugby systems. The shorter pile carpets are popular for synthetic turf used in multisport and community venues.
Approval of the 50mm carpet means that World Rugby is following the trend in synthetic turf for football to reduce the pile-height by using performance infill in combination with a shockpad. The shorter pile height means less infill, thus delivering a field that is more maintenance friendly and that experiences less infill dispersion.
The short-pile carpets can only be submitted for testing in accordance to Regulation 22 when:
|Pile height||Minimum pile weight||Minimum quantity of sand||Splash level|
|50-54mm||Min. 1,350gr/m2||Not less than 10mm||Less than 3.5%|
|55-59mm||Min. 1,450gr/m2||Not less than 10mm||Less than 3.5%|
|60mm||No requirement||No requirement||Less than 6%|
By accepting these carpets, World Rugby hopes it will be easier for World Rugby member unions to grow the game by enabling rugby clubs to use synthetic turf football or other community fields. As 50mm carpets are more common these days, the 60mm pile height was perceived as a barrier for rugby to grow in certain areas around the world.
60mm still recommended
While the 50mm pile height can now be submitted for testing, World Rugby still strongly recommends that fields use a 60mm carpet. “These carpets have a proven track record for providing excellent surfaces for rugby. Consideration of carpets with pile heights between 50mm and 60mm should be restricted to multi-sport, community-based fields that wish to offer rugby as an additional or optional sport,” a statement on the World Rugby website reads.