Second Chichester Junior Fastpitch Tournament sets higher standard

Fri 8 Sep 2017

The second annual Chichester Junior Fastpitch Tournament was played on Saturday 20 August at the Falcons’ home field in Oaklands Park, where three teams of players aged 13-16 battled it in a round-robin format.

A large proportion of the players were members of the Falcons Junior Fastpitch Club in Chichester, with the rest of the group made up of assorted players from elsewhere in the UK, including several GB youth players.

On hand to coach and mentor the players through their games were BSUK Fastpitch Development Manager Jo Malisani, Lee Grafton from the Great Britain Fastpitch League, Sam Grafton from the GB Under-19 Men’s team and Julie Spittle, Manager of the GB U-13 Girls’ Team.

Great games

Once underway, the games were a treat to watch, particularly as the standard of pitching was significantly improved over last year’s tournament.  This resulted in fewer walks and more hitting, which in turn brought about plenty of fielding and stealing – all of which made the games very competitive, fast-paced and fun. 

All through the games, the coaches were able to work with the players to encourage aggressive base-running and sharpen up their defense, which made a measurable difference as the day progressed.

After a short lunch break, Jo Malisani led a one hour batting clinic where the players broke into groups of four or five to work on all aspects of their hitting game.

Prizes

At the end of the day, the players were presented with gold, silver and bronze medals, and four additional trophies and prizes were awarded:

Male MVP -- Adam Choi 
Female MVP -- Caitlin Frank
Best Hitter -- Bronte Harvey
Best Newcomer -- Campbell Scott

David Morris, who directs the Falcons’ Junior Fastpitch programme said, “We were glad to see that this year’s tournament was bigger and better than last year, so we are already looking forward to 2018 for more progress in fastpitch softball. 

“Our thanks go out to Jo, Lee, Sam, Julie and also Sue Howley for standing as First Aid officer, Jan Grafton for more amazing photos and Patrick Knock from BSUK for providing some great prizes for the players.  This is the only competitive fastpitch softball that the majority of our juniors can get in Chichester, so we are grateful for the players who made the trip down from London and beyond.

“One player even flew in to the UK from Florida that morning and headed straight to the tournament!”, David added.

Photos by Jan Grafton

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