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Gridiron bid for ground

By Adam Vidler

September 24, 2013 - Canterbury-Bankstown Express

GAME ON
WHAT: Sydney Uni Lions is one of the clubs that has expressed interest in staging games at Belmore Sports Ground
WHY: The Belmore site has had a $7 million upgrade in 2012 including new training facilities and improved grandstand seating
WHO: The Bulldogs NSW Cup squad and Sydney Olympic host their home games there

FANS could soon enjoy year-round sport from tries to touchdowns if a plan to bring new blood to Belmore Sports Ground bears fruit.

Back To Belmore president Luke Brailey confirmed he had been in talks with several Sydney sports clubs keen to make Belmore their new home.

Among them is gridiron club the Sydney Uni Lions, which is hoping to play at the ground during the 2014 season, which starts in September next year.

Linebacker and club executive Liam Erby said the ground's recent upgrades made it a perfect option.

"It's basically a professional oval, but it's not fully locked up by rugby league like a lot of others around Sydney," he said.

The Lions played several games at the ground in 2006, and Erby said even then the field was of top quality.

"A few of our team members live in the area and are big Bulldogs fans, and they've told us the ground has had some big upgrades," he said.

"There's great parking, good proximity to the other gridiron clubs and great seating."

Belmore hosts home games of the Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs NSW Cup squad, and Sydney Olympic.

The Bulldogs NRL team also trains at the ground.

But the Gridiron NSW season runs from September to December and would not clash with either the NSW Cup or NSW Premier League.

Mr Brailey said his organisation hoped to bring a wide range of sporting clubs to Belmore for 2014 and 2015.

The Bulldogs hold a 21-year lease on the Belmore ground as part of a deal with Canterbury Council.

A Bulldogs spokesman said the NRL would not comment on the possibility of allowing more clubs use of the oval until talks were further advanced.



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