Cap tip Blair Setford.Softball Teams Look To Advance On International Scene
By RENALDO DORSETT
The [Bahamian] men’s and women’s national softball team will close the year with regional tournaments as they look to advance further in international play.
The Bahamas Softball Federation (BSF) has ratified the men’s national team that will represent the country at the upcoming Pan Am Championship and World Qualifier in Medellin, Colombia.
The top eight teams in the event, scheduled to take place September 13-24, will qualify for the Pan Am Games in Mexico in 2014. The top five teams will qualify for the World Games in New Zealand in March, 2013.
After a gruelling selection process which took place over the last three months, a very young team was selected, although it does include a few veterans.
The Pan Am Qualifier will include the United States, Canada, Mexico, Venezuela, Colombia, Argentina, Cuba, Aruba, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, US Virgin Islands, Honduras, Panama, Belize, El Salvador and Nicaragua.
The team will be managed by Godfrey “Gully” Burnside, and coaches Martin “Pork” Burrows and Perry Seymour. Steven “Garbo” Coakley is the chef de mission.
BSF president Burket Dorsett said this team has the ability to contend because of its young talent and the experience of its coaching staff.
“The expectations are set high for this team. This team is young, but it is also very talented and will be under the guidance of three internationally certified softball coaches in the men’s division,” he said.
“This team is the best the federation could put together with some of the best players from around the country. The selection process was a rigorous one, and the committee feels confident that this team going forward can get the Bahamas to the pinnacle of softball internationally.”
The women’s national team that will represent the Bahamas at the English Caribbean Amateur Softball (ECAS) Championship in Belize was also ratified.
For the first time, ECAS is scheduled to host an inter-confederation event, the ECAS Ladies Championship, November 28 to December 2 in Belize.
The winner of the event will qualify for the 2013 World Games in Cali, Colombia.
The executives and coaches of the BSF have travelled to a number of Family Islands scouting talent for the national teams in order to get a full representation of the Bahamas.
According to BSF executives, the team travelled to Grand Bahama, Exuma, Eleuthera, Abaco and Andros.
“The Bahamas Softball Federation is trying its best to make these rounds to ensure that we have the best softball players the country has to offer to be a part of these national teams,” added Burnside.
The ISF, in March of this year at the CONPASA meeting in Valencia, Venezuela, announced that each of its confederations – the Africans, Americas, Asian, European, Oceania and English Caribbean – will stage their respective women’s championship with the winners competing at the World Games.
Prior to the start of the championship in Belize, Canada will conduct coaches and pitchers certification clinics for the English Caribbean.
The ECAS second congress will take place in Belize November 27 presided over by president Burket Dorsett, ISF president Don Porter and ISF vice president for ECAS, Romell Knowles.
The Bahamas team would be managed by Mario Ford and the coaches are Lenny Newton and Spurgeon Johnson.
Men’s National Team For Pan Am
Championship / World Qualifier
Martin Burrows Jr.
Women’s National Team
Championship/World Games Qualifier