At Playrite, we are always going to be saying the best things
about our synthetic surfaces, so it's great to hear our customer's
feedback to ensure that it reflects our opinions on our products.
Below is a report from Pensford Tennis Club who visited Ember
Sports Club after Playrite's Matchplay 2 surface was
installed. They played on the court for about an hour then Peter
Dunning of Pensford Tennis Club put the following questions to
Malcolm Baird from The Ember Club. The full news article can be
viewed by clicking here.
How differently does the court play when it is wet?
Lower bounce? Skidding off the surface?
Unlike some artificial grass surfaces, the playing
characteristics of the carpet surface do not change much when wet.
The bounce is not much different and the ball does not skid.
Is the bounce different when the ball hits a
The bounce is different when the ball hits the lines. Many types
of court have this problem, even tarmac to a small extent. On our
courts the ball tends to stay low. This may be partly due to the
way that they were laid.
The carpets are not stuck to the tarmac surface underneath but
the lines are joined by a wide sticky tape. The reason that the
carpet is not stuck to the tarmac is so that it can be lifted
without damaging the tarmac at the end of the life of the
Can the courts be played on in frosty
Frost does not prevent play and we do not find the surface
slippery in these conditions. However, if they are icy (after snow
has fallen and then frozen) then they are of course slippery.
Are there any circumstances when the court is
Apart from icy conditions, we have not found them slippery.
Does the amount of sand visible on the surface vary
according to whether the courts are dry or wet?
The sand is slightly more visible when the courts are dry but
this does not change the playing characteristics of the court.
What maintenance do you carry out on the courts, and how
frequently? e.g. application of sand, re-distribution of existing
sand, removal of debris, moss, etc.
As far as maintenance is concerned, we drag the courts monthly
(we have a four-foot-wide stiff brush for this purpose) to remove
debris and to prevent algae from forming. This also has the effect
of redistributing the sand to remove footprints, etc. Our courts
have been laid for two years this April and we have booked our
first external maintenance visit. This is to vacuum up the existing
sand, clean/filter it and redistribute it back on to the court.
They will assess whether any additional sand is required and adjust
as necessary. We have not needed to add any sand so far. If the
courts are susceptible to algae/moss i.e. because of overhanging
trees, continually damp/shady areas, a 6 monthly spray should
prevent any problems.
Can the courts be played on immediately after rain, even
after a heavy downpour?
We can play on our courts immediately after heavy rain but
obviously the court drainage must be good.
To what degree do the balls pick up moisture from the
court? Do the balls fluff-up? What balls do you use? Do balls last
The balls do pick up a bit of moisture after rain but not as
much as we have found when playing on astro-turf. We have found
that the balls do fluff up, especially when wet. This can be a
problem because they can get quite fluffy but it does depend what
type of balls are used.
We normally use Slazenger Wimbledon Ultra Vis with Hydroguard
and we were advised that these would be the best choice for water
repellent qualities. They are fine when the courts are completely
dry but, in the wet, these fluff up badly. We have therefore
switched to using Wilson Double Core balls when the carpet is wet
and these are perfectly okay as regards fluffing. They are a
"harder" ball and our members sometimes remark that they prefer the
Slazenger balls (but understand why we use them).
The balls do last significantly longer than when used on our
all-weather tarmac courts.
Do players have to wear a particular type of shoe, or,
like indoor carpet courts, is it preferable to wear a slightly worn
We were advised by the court suppliers that ordinary tennis
shoes should be worn (not trainers with ridged soles). Unlike
indoor carpet courts, a sole with a good grip is preferred. There
is some slight "slide" quality created by the sand.
Mr Baird indicated that the Club was very satisfied with the
courts, so much so that they are to re-surface their two remaining
tarmac courts with the same surface later this year.
Thank you to Pensford Tennis Club for letting us include
this information on the Playrite blog and if anyone has any further
comments or questions we'd be happy to answer them or click here to
find out more about our Playrite Tennis