Month: March 2019

An infield softball.

Softball Leinster Awarded Umpire Development Grant

Softball Ireland have today announced the awarding of an umpire development grant to Softball Leinster. Following on from the commitment given at the 2018 Annual General Meeting to assist Softball Leinster addressing the umpiring short fall in the Leinster region,  Softball Ireland have agreed to allow the 2019 Brian Walshe Cup to be designated as a training tournament for newly trained umpires to gain valuable experience and feedback. 

In addition to designating the Brian Walsh Cup as an umpire training tournament, Softball Ireland have agreed to provide Softball Leinster with funding to support the following:

  • Allotment of funding for the costs of hosting umpire training courses
  • Allotment of funding for the assessment and guidance of new umpires at the Brian Walshe Cup by experienced and qualified umpires

Speaking on the announcement of the funding, Softball Ireland President Colum Lavery said “Softball Ireland welcome Softball Leinsters push to develop more umpires in the Region and we are delighted that as the National Governing Body we can provided Softball Leinster with both logistical and financial support through the development grant and making the Brian Walshe Cup available to umpires to get experience and positive feedback from other experienced umpires.”

The first of the Softball Leinster umpire beginner’s training courses for 2019 will be on the 13th of April. Time and Location TBD.

Home plate with a bat, balls and helmet.

Coed Slowpitch Trial Number 2 in the Books

Preparations for 2019 European Championships Ramp up

The coed slowpitch national team continued their preparations for the 2019 European Championships with the hosting of the second of three planned trials to identify the final roster.

On a wet, cold, sleety and sunny day in Castleknock College 16 players attended the second trial and were assessed in the key areas of fitness, defense and offence. Ireland team manger Senan Dormer will select and extended squad prior to selecting the final squads to compete at the European Championships in July 2019 and the BSF World Series in September 2019.

Dates of the third trial will be announced in the coming days and players are encouraged to attend.  

European Championships – Budapest Hungary – July 15 – 20, 2019

BSF World Series – London – September 7-8, 2019

Julie Trundle representing Ireland.

IWD: Focus on Julie Trundle

Softball Ireland has a strong commitment to gender balance on its board with 50% or greater of the board being female since 2015.

This positive in governance extends further than just the Softball Ireland board to our Regional Associations also. Currently Fastpitch Ireland and Softball Ulster are led by female chairs with both following in the footsteps of Julie Trundle who was a forming member and long time driving force as Chair of Softball Leinster. In addition to chairing and driving the expansion of Softball in Leinster, Julie has been responsible for the re-introduction of Indoor Softball (twice) onto the Irish Softball calendar. 

Julie has not only driven change at the board level, Julie has been a member of the Softball Ireland Coed Slowpitch National team since 2004 and has traveled to many tournament around the world on club teams and everybody will agree that Julie has been a wonderful ambassador for our sport in Ireland, the UK and Beyond.

On this International Womens Day we thank Julie for her continued commitment to our sport!

IWD: Two Irish Players to attend MLB Cadet Camp

To coincide with the Boston Red Sox v New York Yankees series to be played in London in June 2019, Major League Baseball (MLB) are running a Cadet Camp targeted at high level young male and female athletes. The athletes to partake in the camp have been selected by BaseballSoftballUK and MLB.

The Camp will be an action-packed programme of specially designed daytime coaching, drills and game time, followed by evening talks, delivered by MLB and their expert coaches, covering both baseball and fastpitch softball.

Softball Ireland are delighted to announce that through our continued partnership with BaseballSoftballUK and in particular BSF Fastpitch, Fastpitch Ireland have accepted the invitation to nominate Irish Junior Internationals Caitlyne De Lange and Maeve Og O’Leary to attend the MLB Cadet Camp at the end of the May.

This is a unique opportunity for the two talented Players to spend a week practicing in such a high performance environment.

Softball Ireland & Fastpitch Ireland would like to express our gratitude to BaseballSoftballUK for providing an opportunity to include some of our athletes in this camp.

WNT Celebrates International Womens Day

Since Team 1 participated at the 2015 European Championships in Rosmalen, the Ireland WNT programme has continued to grow with 2018 being the most successful to date winning 2 European Championship medals.

Since the faithful Saturday morning in 2014 when the Director of Fastpitch, Melanie Cunningham, launched the discipline in Ireland the stated aim at that time was to create a profile for the sport at an national level and international level in order to create a catalyst for grass roots development in Ireland. Speaking at the Softball Ireland Annual General Meeting in November 2018, the development pathway of “top down – bottom up” was outlined to the membership with 2019 seeing the launch of a national Fastpitch league together with schools initiatives.

2019 is also the qualification year for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo with 4 weeks in July deciding which country will represent Europe at the Olympics in 2020. The road to Tokyo is very difficult but the Olympic dream is alive!

The pioneers of Team 1 started Ireland’s international odyssey against Austria on a cold and wet Sunday morning in July 2015, capping the week off with a memorable first ever victory against Israel.

On this International Womens Day, we thank all the players and coaches who have been part of this wonderful fastpitch journey to date and we look forward to teaching many girls into the future how to “throw like a girl”.  

Softball Ireland announce coaching partnership with BSUK

Softball Ireland are delighted to announce that it has entered into a coaching partnership with BaseballSoftballUK through which Softball Ireland will be able to access and utilise the Coach Education programme developed and delivered by BaseballSoftballUK to create a Softball Ireland Coach Education programme. The programme will be used as the foundation of a partnership that will see the development of Coach Education capability and capacity in Softball Ireland.

BSUK will provide an initial tutor training course for tutors identified and nominated to attend the course by Softball Ireland. This is intended to upskill tutors in Ireland to allow delivery of a Softball Ireland Coaching Education programme utilising BSUK Coach Education Programme content and resources to every club in Ireland.

Speaking on the partnership Softball Ireland President Colum Lavery said “Softball Ireland has identified that one of the key challenges to player retention is that we have no structured coaching programme for beginners and entry level players. Our partnership will allow us create a pathway that enables every Irish softball club to have at a minimum an activator level qualified coach by the end of the 2019 season. This is a very positive step for our sport.”

“It is intended that by the end of 2019, as the programme rolls outs further, that we will have a number of coaches qualified to the highest level that can improve players at all standards across the game. Players are more likely to stay playing if they receive structured coaching.” added Lavery

The initial tutor group will consist of a number of national team coaches and individuals identified by Regional Committees. Softball Ireland will be encouraging the nomination of female coaches.

Following the qualification of the tutors, Softball Ireland will host a number coaches courses to facilitate every team in Ireland qualifying at least one coach. Further details of the coaching programme will be announced in the coming weeks.

Registration for Brian Walshe Cup 2019 Now Open

The 2019 edition of the Brian Walshe Cup will be held on April 27, 2019. Teams are now invited to register for the tournament through the registration link below. As with previous tournaments, the tournament will be used as a fundraising event for the Slowpitch National Team which is participating at the 2019 European Championships in July 2019. Entry fee is €150 per team Click Here to Register