Ireland Legend Sean O’Brien Makes Plea For Rugby Ban Following Latest Outcry

Ban them.

Former Ireland and Leinster back-rower, Sean O’Brien, has called for 4G pitches to be banned in rugby because they are simply causing too many injuries.

These synthetic grass pitches are being used more and more in the game in recent years, and while they can make games more exciting and are excellent when it comes to the battle against the elements, they come with serious consequences.

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England and Exeter winger, Jack Nowell, recently shared images of burns he sustained while playing in the Premiership recently on a 4G pitch, with prop Joe Marler also calling for them to be banned.

And O’Brien reckons the time has come, suggesting a hybrid pitch might be a better option going forward.

“I agree they should be gotten rid of, yeah,” O’Brien told Alex Goode on the latest episode of House of Rugby.

“I see some of our own boys, Albert [Tuisue] and Curtis Rona a few weeks ago. They’re not just scrapes, either, they’re not. They’re like proper burns. Some of them are quite deep and they’re there all the time because you’re training every day, they don’t get a chance to heal.

“So I just think they need to be gotten rid of now at this stage. There are too many people getting proper cuts, infections, and all this stuff. And to have something like that literally, when you’re playing rugby like we are at the minute, week in, week out, it’s not good.

“It’s just another burden to the life of a professional player. You shouldn’t have to cover your legs after every training session, or you know, have bandages on during the day. We do enough at the weekends. That would be one less thing for people to worry about if those pitches were gotten rid of.

“They’re great for training in bad weather, I’ll admit that but still – not good for joints, not good for cuts.

“I definitely want to see them gotten rid of anyway, personally. The powers that be will hopefully do something about it. Maybe a hybrid-type style might be a bit better – if we could create something that’s not wrecking people’s legs and joints.

“Hip, knees, everything is a bit sorer after playing on them, because there’s less give obviously on the ground.”