‘No concerns’ about Suncorp surface
The NRL has "no concerns" about the Suncorp Stadium surface despite the venue hosting Brisbane and the Roosters just five days after having eight games played at the ground.
The NRL also backed Roosters coach Trent Robinson's call for a standardisation of playing surface conditions. Despite hosting the inaugural Magic Round from Thursday to Sunday, Suncorp Stadium has again been called upon with Brisbane hosting the Roosters.
NRL head of football Graham Annesley will speak with stadium staff this week but had no concerns about the venue hosting Friday's game.
"On-going Suncorp Stadium turf management protocols continued immediately after the final game of Magic Round on Sunday," Annesley said. "The ground staff at the stadium are experienced professionals who maintain and prepare the surface for multiple codes and multiple events continuously year in and year out.
"We have absolute confidence in the preparations being carried out this week, particularly given the way the surface held up during Magic Round.
"We will continue to liaise with stadium management over the coming days, but we have no concerns ahead of the game on Friday night."
There were a stack of injuries during the four-day festival of football in Queensland. Brisbane's Jack Bird and Manly's Toafofoa Sipley had their seasons ended with ruptured anterior cruciate ligaments.
Canberra winger Jordan Rapana will also miss four weeks with a knee injury while Melbourne's Curtis Scott (broken foot) is out for three months. Newcastle duo Connor Watson and Edrick Lee have foot injuries but are a chance of playing against St George Illawarra on Sunday.
Playing surfaces have been a hot topic this season with concerns about the pitches at Lottoland and the SCG in recent weeks. Robinson repeated his call for standardised surfaces after the Roosters beat Canberra 30-24 on Sunday.
Annesley confirmed the NRL was working towards implementing a surface policy.
"Trent and I have discussed this previously and significant progress has already been made using independent experts to help us develop a draft policy," Annesley said.
"The NRL will continue working towards a standardised approach with the objective of rolling it out across all venues as soon as possible."