Raith set for Bayview switch

Raith Rovers will play their '˜home' Betfred Cup group matches at Bayview if the new Stark's Park 4G pitch is not ready in time.

Thursday, 7th June 2018, 3:47 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th June 2018, 4:52 pm
The scene at Starks Park yesterday (Wednesday) as contractors continue to work on the installation of a 4G pitch. Pic: Fife Photo Agency

Work to install the new synthetic surface is currently ongoing, however, it is considered unlikely that the project will be completed in time to allow Raith to host their group fixtures at Stark’s.

The club has therefore provisionally arranged for the games against Cowdenbeath on Saturday, July 14 and Hearts on Saturday, July 21 to take place at the home of East Fife.

The match against Hearts will also be broadcast live on BT Sport.

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Raith will complete their Betfred Cup group fixtures away to Inverness CT on Tuesday, July 24 and at Cove Rangers on Saturday, July 28.

The club hope to have the pitch ready for the start of the league campaign, although Raith have asked the SPFL for an away opener on Saturday, August 4, giving contractors an extra week to complete the work in time for the first match on the new surface to possibly take place on Saturday, August 11.

Raith deputy chairman David Sinton told the Press: “The contractors are working as fast as they can.

“They have made very good progress so far, but it’s possible things might be held up a bit by the arrival of the carpet.

“However, it should all be finished within the timescale originilly envisaged for the contract.”

Mr Sinton confirmed that the club had broached the subject of reversing the Hearts fixture to Tynecastle, however, this was ruled out by the SPFL.

“They felt that would be conferring an advantage on Hearts, because they’d get an extra home game,” he said.

“The feeling was other clubs would object.”

Meanwhile, Raith have confirmed two pre-season friendlies which, again, will take place away from Stark’s Park.

Rovers will host Dunfermline Athletic at Bayview on Wednesday, July 4 with a 7.45 p.m kick-off. As this is a Raith home game, season tickets will be valid.

Rovers will then travel to Berwick Rangers on Saturday, July 7. Kick-off 3.00 p.m.