PSL All-Stars triumph at Hit and Run 6 Tournament

Mon 17 Sep 2018

The London-based Publishers Softball League All-Stars won the Hit and Run 6 Softball Tournament, hosted by Maidenhead Softball Club at North Maidenhead Cricket Club on Sunday 9 September.

The Hit and Run Tournament is an annual eight-team event aimed at helping developing teams provide game time to new players.

This year, along with four teams who play in the Windsor and Maidenhead League, the tournament included two London-based teams, the PSL All-Stars and COMO Hotels, plus Herts Buzzards and the longest travellers of the day, the Eastbourne Bombers.

Cup semi-finals

During the first half of the day the eight teams competed in two round-robin groups, and from the first games it was clear the that the front runners would be the PSL All-Stars and RG Blue Sox.  Both completed their group stage programme undefeated and thus avoided each other in the Cup semi-finals. 

London-based COMO Hotels secured a Cup semi-final place with a second win in their second game, setting up a meeting with the RG Blue Sox, while the last Cup semi-final place was settled by a local derby between Bracknell Scorchers and TV Hurricanes.

Both teams went into the final round-robin game on a 1-1 record, but the Scorchers prevailed to set up a semi-final against the PSL All-Stars.

The local teams fared very differently in the Cup semi-finals.  The Scorchers found the All-Stars too strong and went down 30-1.  However, the Blue Sox had a much tighter encounter and only just overcame COMO 12-11 to set up the final that had looked on the cards from the start.

Plate semi-finals

In the Plate competition, Maidenhead’s own Rascals team faced the Herts Buzzards in the first semi-final.  After a tough start for the Rascals, they finished the group stages with a draw against the Eastbourne Bombers. 

Herts Buzzards had an equally tough time, having been drawn in the harder of the two groups where they played well but were unable to register a win.  Likewise, the Eastbourne Bombers had two defeats before their drawn encounter with the Rascals.

In the Plate semi-finals, both local teams overcome their opposition.

The Rascals beat the Buzzards 21-9 while the Thames Valley Hurricanes went on to beat the Bombers 14-2. 

The Rascals have been perennial finalists over the six years of the competition but have consistently fallen short, and 2018 was another instance of that as the Hurricanes, who only just missed out on the Cup competition, took the Plate title with a convincing 18-8 win.

Cup final

The Cup final provided a fitting end to the day.  Both teams were unbeaten coming in to the final and both were playing well.  It was also their first appearance in the Cup final: the PSL All-Stars had been Plate runners-up last year while the Blue Sox had the same finish in 2016.

This year, both teams took the next step to Cup Final and it was the PSL All-Stars who took the crown as they squeezed past the Blue Sox 12-9. 

The standard of play and popularity of the event have gone from strength to strength over the past six years and looks to continue next year, now with a new winner’s name on the Roll of Honour.

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