New players announced by GB Slowpitch
Thu 30 Mar 2017
The GB Slowpitch Team held its annual Open Trials on the first weekends of February and March, and has now announced that eight new players have been added to the team’s player pool for 2017.
Another nine players who were asked to re-trial have been retained in the squad.
Trials were held at the Royal Masonic School in Rickmansworth.
GB Slowpitch Head Coach Stephen Patterson has now challenged the new and retained players to “take the positions away from the players already wearing the jerseys”.
All members of the GB Slowpitch Team pool, including the new and retained players, are eligible to be selected to represent Great Britain in any of the team’s domestic and international competitions in 2017.
New players who have been added to squad following the trials are:
Players retained after re-trials are:
Stephen Patterson said: "I am delighted with the hunger shown by a number of players entering the programme. Some players have worked really hard to accomplish their goal of making the GB Team. It’s great to see players who previously were not selected come back and get in. That attitude goes a long way in my book. Whether it be in competitions in 2017 or in three to five years’ time, these players have given themselves every opportunity to be involved for a long, long time."
Team Manager Kellie Whitaker was impressed with the response from all the athletes at the well-attended trials. “It was great to see such a mix of experience and attitude at this year’s trials,” Kellie said. “Being new to this element of the Team Manager’s role, I saw such terrific energy and a ‘want’ to get into the GB Squad. It’s great that an event like this allows us to see the unknown become known.”
Organisation for the trials was directed by Kellie Whitaker, but Stephen Patterson also paid tribute to Assistant Coaches Mike Ashley, David Lee and John Lehmann, who provided vital support in assessing players at the event.
The new players have been immediately thrown into action at GB training sessions and will participate in the Annual GB Challenge Tournament on Saturday 8 April at Farnham Park, where all GB players will vie for prospective roster spots for the European Slowpitch Championship in Bulgaria in July, the GB Development Team that will play at the Softball World Series in September and the WSBC Slowpitch World Cup in Florida in November.
New and veteran GB Slowpitch players will also be on hand to support the team’s annual fundraising tournament, the GB Slowpitch Open, on Sunday 9 April, also at Farnham Park.
Places in this tournament are still open, and teams or individual players can enter by contacting GB Slowpitch Team Manager Kelli Whitaker on: email@example.com.
The GB Slowpitch Team is always looking for more opportunities for new players to participate under the Great Britain banner. Plans are in place for a Futures Squad to compete in July and many new players will be included in the GB Development Team for the BSF’s Softball World Series in September.
The success of the GB Slowpitch Team relies on new players continually entering the programme. Players who trial for the team may be at different levels of ability, but GB coaching, strategy and training sessions will look to develop individual talents and maximise players’ potential, which is the key to ensuring that GB's performances remain high now and in the future.
In the past two major international tournaments where the GB Slowpitch Team has taken part – the European Championship and the World Cup -- 29 different players travelled and competed, earning gold and silver medals respectively.
The GB National Team is currently ranked #1 in Europe and #2 in the world. The team is looking for a new Title Sponsor, and anyone interested should contact Stephen Patterson on firstname.lastname@example.org to register interest.