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Marvel turf to be replaced, AFLPA to inspect

Captains feel the heat, turf trouble, Swan's setback Nat Edwards and Mitch Cleary with all the latest news

THE AFL Players' Association will be forced to reinspect the quality of Marvel Stadium turf later this week after a section of soft ground is replaced in front of the interchange benches.

With concerns raised from the two opening round matches at the Docklands venue, a 20-30m section will be re-laid ahead of a pair of games in round two.

It comes after Western Bulldogs veteran Matt Suckling injured his ankle as turf shifted beneath him on Saturday night, while St Kilda and Gold Coast had to contend with large divots during their clash on Sunday.

What we saw on TV was concerning, I was concerned watching it on TV, but generally the players and the clubs who were there were OK - AFLPA's Brett Murphy

It prompted a review from the AFL with the decision formalised to replace the turf on Tuesday or Wednesday.

"We'll inspect that afterwards (the replacement). We've got somebody on the ground now actually inspecting the ground as it is currently," AFLPA head of player and stakeholder relations Brett Murphy said on Monday afternoon.

NOT SO MARVEL-OUS Shifting turf prompts AFL to review Marvel surface

"I've had a few phone calls, interestingly players who played at the ground, they were generally pretty happy with the ground.

"It was a lot softer than normal which has been a concern in previous years.

"We've had calls from other players who clearly saw what occurred with the turf coming up at various times and they've expressed concerns so that's why we're looking into it.

"I've spoken to GMs of football who weren't aware of any issues on the ground during the course of the game until after the ground.

"What we saw on TV was concerning, I was concerned watching it on TV, but generally the players and the clubs who were there were OK."

AFL football operations boss Steve Hocking acknowledged the turf had deteriorated across the weekend. 

"Coming out of the review is a program of turf replacement for all necessary sections of the western side of the ground," he said in a statement on Monday evening. 

"The AFL football operations team, together with the stadium, will ensure these works are complete before round two of the premiership season.

"We will continue to work closely with the AFLPA throughout the week to ensure the surface is safe and appropriate for AFL football."

It is understood the roof remained open during Sunday's Saints-Suns clash with the AFL making the most of sunny conditions to allow the grass further growth.

The Marvel Stadium concerns coincide with the AFLPA's decision to take part in Wednesday's SCG ground inspection ahead of Friday night's match between Sydney and Adelaide.

With the SCG undergoing increased use with rugby league and union matches in recent weeks, the AFLPA will review the turf this week in a process typically left with clubs and the AFL.