Irish firm to make history at World Cup in Russia

George Mullan, owner of SIS Group. Pic: James Connolly / PicSell8

By Pádraig Hoare

There will be a significant Irish on-field presence at this summer’s World Cup in Russia with a Sligo-owned firm selected to install six of the 12 pitches used at the tournament, including the final.

SIS Pitches was selected to design, construct and install six pitches, including the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, which will host the opening game and the final.

It is the first time a World Cup final has ever been played on anything but all-natural grass, after former Fifa general secretary Jérôme Valcke outlined plans in 2014 for a men’s final to be played on a synthetic pitch “sooner rather than later”.

SIS Pitches, which was set up in 2001 by chief executive George Mullan who directs the company from Sligo, lay grass and synthetic pitches and sports surfaces at some of the biggest stadiums around the world.

Russian organisers say the Luzhniki Stadium will be the most advanced in World Cup history with the use of the company’s reinforced natural turf system called SISGrass.

Mr Mullan said: “SISGrass was only launched in 2015 and already it has been installed at a number of world-class stadiums and now the 2018 World Cup Final will be played on it. 

The quality of SISGrass will ensure the pitches are resilient.”

Other stadia pitches that will be laid by SIS include the 45,000-seater and home of Spartak Moscow, Otkritie Arena, and the 45,000-seater Rostov Arena which will host five World Cup games including Brazil’s opener against Switzerland.

More on this topic

There's a window cleaning World Cup and here's who won

World Cup will be the Hunger Games for Ireland, says Marshall

Russian security agency claims drone attacks thwarted at World Cup

‘Hero’ pilot killed in Leicester helicopter crash was ‘living the dream’

More in this Section

UL signs contracts to purchase Dunnes Stores site

Record 1m tickets sold for outdoor gigs this summer

IMI launch new IDA-backed leadership course for managers of FDI giants in Ireland

Profits surge at firms of Irish rugby players as pub firm prospers


Gardening: Something for everyone at Chelsea Flower Show

The Wine List: Will 2019 see the rise of rosé in Ireland?

The Menu: Food news with Joe McNamee

The Currabinny Cooks: Crab dishes give a great sense of homely cooking

More From The Irish Examiner