Ross Lyon criticises decision to leave Marvel Stadium roof open, condition of the ground, post-match press conference, video, St Kilda Saints v North Melbourne Kangaroos


A “disappointed” Ross Lyon has unloaded on the decision to keep the Marvel Stadium roof open in the lead into St Kilda’s narrow eight-point win over North Melbourne at the venue on Sunday.

The Saints overcome a shaky first three quarters at Docklands, kicking five goals in the last term to run over the top of the Kangaroos in a low-scoring affair.

However speaking post-match, Lyon shifted some of the attention to the state of the ground, left perplexed as to why Marvel Stadium remained open overnight during wet conditions in Melbourne.

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St Kilda Saints survive big North scare | 01:24

The Saints-Kangaroos showdown was the third game AFL game played at Marvel Stadium over the weekend after the Essendon-Bulldogs clash on Friday night and Carlton-West Coast match on Saturday afternoon.

“I’m pretty sure if it was Essendon-Bulldogs on Friday night they wouldn’t have left the (roof) open all night and all morning,” the Saints coach told reporters.

“This ground is like a carpark and hard at the best of times. You could see, anyone that watched that game, the ability to pick it up, it was like a cake of soap for both teams.

“So really disappointed. We rang the ground manager pre-game, they didn’t know why the roof had been (left open). Seats were wet for fans.

“I think our broadcasters have a right to be disappointed. I think if it was the MCG, it’s OK, because the ground’s got give in it and it’s not like an ice-skating rink.

“Whoever is responsible for that, hopefully they get their processes right because clubs are so process driven.”

Lyon has unloaded on the decision to leave the Marvel Stadium roof open overnight (Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images

Lyon added that the Saints wouldn’t seek further clarity from the AFL or Marvel Stadium, saying “it is what it is”.

“I thought we got treated with contempt, both clubs,” he said.

Speaking on Fox Footy’s First Crack, Saints legend Leigh Montagna agreed with Lyon that it was “disappointing,” saying “you’ve got a roof there and you want to be in dry conditions and playing good football.”

Dual premiership Kangaroo David King concurred, declaring St Kilda had been unfairly treated.

“Player welfare is number one,” King began on First Crack.

“That venue is different and we talk a lot about Optus Stadium (and how) they are harder on players and more taxing – you only have to ask players that play there as a home game regularly. They’re catered for differently in the recovery programs after those games.

“This is no good, this is a team challenging for a finals series in the back half of 2023 and they’ve been subjected to an unfair advantage in a lot of ways.

“I think that Ross is right. If it were the big clubs, would they have had the same level of scrutiny? I think we know, don’t we?

“If that was Carlton v Collingwood, there’s no way that happens.”

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