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Allianz Park praised after staging first match between Saracens and Cardiff Blues

Last Updated: 27/01/13 9:11pm

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Allianz Park: First match gets under way at Saracens' new home

Allianz Park: First match gets under way at Saracens' new home

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Saracens' new artificial pitch was given the thumbs up after the club's Allianz Park stadium staged its first professional match.

There were 3,500 fans in attendance for the 'test event' as Sarries defeated Cardiff Blues 19-11 in the LV= Cup.

Both clubs reported that any injuries sustained were due to rugby's usual attrition rate and not because of the surface.

Saracens chief executive Edward Griffiths said: "People seemed to have a good time, there was a good atmosphere. When they got to their seats they seemed like children on Christmas morning as they took in their new surroundings.

"One elderly gentleman with tears streaming down his face told me 'I can't believe this is happening, it's like a dream come true'.

"There are lots of things that can be improved upon and that's a process we'll work through, but in general everyone from fans to directors of rugby seem very pleased with our new home."

Blues director of rugby Phil Davies described the pitch as a "great surface", while fly-half Ceri Sweeney claimed it will lead to a faster game.

"There was no moisture on the ball, which was good for handling and meant you could play a bit," Sweeney said.

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