GB Women announce ‘Long List’ selections

Fri 8 Mar 2019

Friday 8 March -- With a crucial summer coming up for the GB Women’s Fastpitch Team, centered on the quest to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Head Coach Rachael Watkeys and her staff have announced a ‘long list’ selection of 25 athletes on International Women's Day.

A final selection of the players who will compete at the European Women’s Championship in Ostrava, Czech Republic, from 30 June-6 July will be made by a Selection Panel in April, on or around Easter weekend, and announced shortly thereafter. 

The GB Team will need to finish in the top six at the Europeans to claim a place in the Euro-Africa Olympic Qualifying Tournament, which will be held in Utrecht, Netherlands from 23-28 July.  While nothing can be taken for granted, GB has not finished lower than fifth at a European Championship since 2001.

The Olympic Qualifier will be contested by eight teams: the top six teams from Europe and the top two teams from Africa.  Only the winner will qualify for the Olympics.

While the squad for the Olympic Qualifier is expected to be mainly the same as that selected for the Europeans, changes between the two tournaments are possible.

Many players from the ‘long list’ who do not make the final selection for the European Championship will still be eligible to play for the GB Under-22 or GB Under-18 Teams that, with no official tournament this summer, will be competing in the prestigious Canada Cup Invitational Tournament from 8-14 July in Surrey, British Columbia.

‘Long list’ selections for the GB Under-22 Women’s Team have also been announced on International Women’s Day, and GB Under-18 and GB Under-16 competition squads plus reserves will be announced on or around 22 March.

The long list

The 25 players who remain in contention for selection to the European Championship and Olympic Qualifier squads are listed below – though the staff can bring additional players into consideration if circumstances warrant.

Emmilee Blowers
Sydney Brown
Katie Burge
Georgina Corrick
Kimberly Crowson
Hannah Edwards
Lauren Evans
Beth Fleming
Carling Hare
Amie Hutchison
Andrea Johnson
Lauren King
Olivia Lee
Amy Moore
Nerissa Myers
Megan Parno
Stephanie Pearce
Aubrey Peterson
Hannah Pitman
Sydney Robson
Morgan Salmon
Alana Snow
Chloe Wigington
Alicja Wolny
Sarah-Grace Wrennall

Between the announcement of the ‘long list’ and the selection of a final squad for the European Championship, players will be reporting regularly to staff members on their training progress by sending metrics and videos, and these will play a role in selection.

The staff

The GB Women’s Team staff that will take the players to the Europeans and the Olympic Qualifier are:

Head Coach:  Rachael Watkeys
Assistant Coach:  Liz Knight
Pitching Coach:  Tina Whitlock
Exercise Physiologist:  Kim Hannessen
Team Manager:  Simon Mortimer

The team is currently advertising for a Hitting Coach to add to the staff, and may also attempt to recruit a sports psychologist.

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