Newest Manchester team wins its debut game
Mon 2 May 2016
The newest team to enter the Manchester Softball League (MSL), the Urmston Rippers, played its first-ever outdoor league game on Tuesday 26 April, and came away with a hard-fought 23-13 win over the Barflies in Division 4.
The club is only a year old, and owes its existence in part to the efforts of BaseballSoftballUK’s development team in the North West, who brought in Sportivate funding and worked with organisations like Pride Sport to promote beginner sessions.
The Urmston Rippers then entered two teams in the Manchester Indoor Softball League, the Rippers and Strippers, who finishing 3rd and 4th and 5th and 12th respectively in the Autumn and Winter seasons.
But the Rippers knew that their experience of playing outdoors was very limited, so they made sure to enter the Manchester Firstball Tournament, which took place on 23-24 April, the weekend before the start of the outdoor league, so they could get as many outdoor games under their belt as possible. At the Firstball, they managed a respectable runner-up position in the Spoon final.
Teams in the MSL outdoor league have already started to like the new team, many commenting on their positive, fun spirit when playing the game.
The Rippers have big plans for growing their club and raising their level of play. They want to expand locally in the Trafford area to form several teams, and the plan is to have a couple of teams in the Manchester Softball League plus travelling teams that will play in tournaments around the country.
The club is keen to get the local community involved, having seen the enjoyment that softball has brought to their new members. People who had not been active for years now can't wait to go to the park to train. So the Rippers are on the lookout for more companies and individuals who can sponsor their plans.
BSUK’s North West Development Manager Luis Arrevillagas said: “The Rippers’ effect can now be felt in Urmston and surrounding areas. They are working really hard to make their club the best it can be. They are learning at 100 mph -- batting, fielding, pitching, scoring, uniforms, sponsorship, recruitment -- you name it, they are on it. And as with most softball teams, they are really inclusive: you can find people from all backgrounds, ages, professions, etc on their roster.”
If you are interested in seeing what the Rippers are all about, visit their website: www.urmston-rippers.com/.
If you would like to bring a similar softball development project to your area in the North West, please get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org.