Registration now open for Great Britain Fastpitch League

Tue 20 Mar 2012

Registration is open now for individual youth and adult players who want to play this year in the Great Britain Fastpitch League (GBFL), formerly the London Fastpitch Softball League.

This year, the league will feature two adult divisions plus Under-17 and Under-14 divisions, and there will be mini-tournaments for all divisions on six Saturdays in May, June, July and August – few of which conflict with major slowpitch events.

No previous fastpitch experience is necessary, and last year the league welcomed a growing number of slowpitch players who enjoyed playing both formats.

League play on all six Saturdays will take place at Richings Park Sports Club, Wellesley Avenue, Iver, Buckinghamshire SL0 9BN, not far from Heathrow Airport.

How to register

Players who want to register for the 2012 GBFL season should click here. []

After registration, individual players will be allocated to teams in  Adult Divisions 1 and 2, the Under-17 League or the Under-14 League based on age, previous experience, previous team affiliation and consultation with relevant coaches, players or parents.

The deadline for registration is May 15, 2012.

Players who join the league after that date can register and pay later, but the BSF requires payment of all team membership fees by the end of May and the league needs enough money in its bank account by then to pay those fees – not to mention paying for pitches, umpires, softballs etc.

Playing dates

Both the youth and adult leagues will play on the Saturdays listed below.  The youth leagues will play in the morning and the adult leagues in the afternoon, with exact timings to be announced later:

Saturday, May 19
Saturday, May 26
Saturday, June 16
Saturday, June 23
Saturday, July 7
Saturday, August 4

Another important date is the weekend of June 2-3, when the GBFL will be hosting the London Cup at Richings Park, an international women's fastpitch tournament featuring teams from Denmark, Switzerland, France and Spain as well as the GB Under-19 Women's Team and the British club team London Angels.

League structure

The Great Britain Fastpitch League structure for 2012 is not 100% set, as it will depend on how many players register in the different age groups. But it should look something like this:

Senior Division 1 – up to 6 teams
Senior Division 2 – up to 6 teams
Under-17 Division – up to 4 teams
Under-14 Division – up to 4 teams

Help needed

For the past two seasons, the fastpitch league has been organised and run by BSUK.  This year, BSUK will no longer be able to devote as much staff time to the project, so the league is looking for volunteer help.

In particular, the need is for:

  • Volunteers for the GBFL Committee, especially someone to act as Treasurer.
  • People willing to turn up early at Richings Park on league days to get the fields ready, particularly setting up outfield fences.  This is an easy job if a lot of people are doing it, and a hard job for just one or two.
  • People interested in taking a two-day Fastpitch Umpire Course on April 21-22 at Milton Keynes, with ex-ESF Umpire-in-Chief Marlies Struyve as the trainer.

If you want to join the GBFL Committee or commit to field set-up for some of the league dates, please contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

If you want to take the Fastpitch Umpire Course on April 21-22, contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Bigger and better

Last year, the fastpitch league expanded to twelve teams, including men's, women's and mixed teams.

This year, the league will be adding the Under-17 and Under-14 divisions and hopes to have larger and stronger rosters on all the adult teams.

Everyone who played in the fastpitch league last year had a great time, and there was some excellent softball played.

Everyone is welcome – so why not register and give it a go?

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