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Rigby Taylor's top-class products help independent school cricket pitches meet high demand

The judicious selection of Rigby Taylor grass seed and amenity consumables, combined with expert advice and back-up from the company's area technical representative, are playing a key role in enabling Kevin Reilly to consistently present first-class cricket surfaces at the University College School's sports ground.

Rigby Taylor - the company at the forefront of supplying innovative products for the successful management and maintenance of turf surfaces – has been supplying the Hampstead, north west London-based independent school's head groundsman with a range of products for the past six years or so, "and not only are the results excellent, but the support I receive from Corin Beeney, Rigby Taylor's technical representative, is second to none," says Kevin.

He continues: "Our cricket pitch is based on a London Clay sub-soil (as are all our playing surfaces) and with Rigby Taylor's help and assistance – including soil sampling – we introduced the R9 grass seed mixture and Delta Sport fertiliser for the cricket outfields, plus Activate R biostimulant.

"Our three squares have to withstand heavy use, for up to 20 hours each week, by school teams and additional 'outside' users. But by combining such world-class products with a regular maintenance regime, the result is that we're able to consistently meet these demands while presenting first-class wickets and pitch."

R9 is a 100 per cent fine ryegrass and part of the Rigby Taylor 'iCON' programme of 'low growth' grass seeds which reduce mowing frequency but offer a host of advanced and unique specialised characteristics for high tolerance to wear, and drought and disease tolerance, for example.

Kevin normally applies the Delta Sport fertiliser three times a year at the usual timings of spring, summer and autumn. The Delta granules are formulated from composted chicken litter formulated with N, P and K mineral sources, plus magnesium and zinc that ensure an even distribution of nutrients as well as significant organic content (including micro-nutrients boron, copper, manganese and iron).

Designed to help retain nutrients within the rootzone, the Activate R biostimulant – which contains ERD, humic acids and plant growth hormones – increases plant health and rooting, as well as has chelated trace elements for improved turf colour. Activate is applied every eight-ten weeks.

Kevin, aged 58, joined the school in 1987 and has spent a lifetime in the industry – beginning as a grounds boy at Liverpool Cricket Club, then periods at Lancashire Country Cricket's Old Trafford ground and at Liverpool CC again before joining Uxbridge Cricket Club.

With such experience, it comes natural for Kevin to demand the best products and the best service from his suppliers. "Rigby Taylor are never complacent and they never let me down," he adds.

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