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Bulldogs have run of Belmore Oval

By Adam Vidler

July 31, 2012 - Canterbury-Bankstown Express

THE Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs club has been accused of "exercising their muscle" to keep the Belmore Sports Ground closed to weekend games.

Sydney Olympic FC and the Bulldogs have had to reschedule games since June 21 because of damage to the middle of the ground.

A Football NSW spokesman said Olympic was forced to move its home game from Belmore Sports Ground to Lambert Park, at Leichhardt, on Sunday when it played APIA-Leichardt Tigers.

He said the Belmore ground remained closed to Olympic to give the ground the chance to regenerate following recent rain.

However, the Bulldogs were "exercising their muscle" so they could continue to train at the site, he said.

Bulldogs football manager Alan Thompson said the club was only abiding by Canterbury Council's decision to allow the side to train on parts of the ground

"I think it's a good decision by the council, the ground has been severely damaged by overuse through the middle of the park," he said.

Mr Thompson said the Bulldogs had incurred "significant expense" in relocating their NSW Cup and junior home games to other grounds.

He said Bulldogs training only took place on the edges of the ground, away from the roped-off middle area.

A Canterbury spokesman said the council had a meeting and ground inspection with Sydney Olympic representatives last Tuesday to explain why the site had been closed to games.

Sydney Olympic president George Giannaros declined to comment.


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