Three GB Teams announce 2018 selections

Tue 20 Mar 2018

Thursday 8 March -- Three GB female fastpitch teams that will be competing in World or European Championships this summer have chosen International Women’s Day to announce the players selected for these tournaments.

The GB Senior Women’s Team will be competing at the WBSC World Championship in Japan this August, a tournament that will start the qualification process for the 2020 Olympics. 

Earlier, in July, the GB Under-19 Women’s Team will be in northeast Italy to defend the European Championship title it won two years ago, and then a newly-created GB Under-22 Women’s Team, featuring many of the same players, will play for the first time in the European Under-22 Championship in Slovakia.

Selection process​

These days, the selection process for most GB Teams is a fairly rigorous affair.  Here in the UK, home-based players came to an initial open trial in January which featured a wide range of game-based and strength and conditioning tests, and a proportion of those who attended were invited back for a Selection Trial in February.  These players also had to submit additional information, including answering a questionnaire on their attitude to a variety of team-based situations.

Meanwhile, players trialling who are based overseas had to submit a much wider range of evidence and information, much of it on video.

Selection panels for all three teams were convened during February, consisting of the coaching staff for each team plus one or more “external selectors”, whose main role is to ensure that selections are made fairly and transparently, based on criteria set out in GB Softball’s Selection Policy.  These panels examined all the evidence submitted and carried out extensive discussions before deciding on the players selected for each team, with the Head Coach having the final say.

Finally, the players who had trialled for these teams had to be contacted with the decisions, and those who had been offered places were required to confirm that they had accepted their selection.

With all of these processes now completed, the selections for each team can be found below.

GB Women’s Team

The GB Women’s Team is entering the most important period in its history, with the prestigious World Championship in Japan this summer, a regional Olympic Qualifying Tournament planned for 2019 and the Tokyo Olympics – assuming the GB Team can qualify – in 2020.  Selections for this year’s GB Women’s Team were made with this in mind.

Despite the disadvantages our programme has compared to our main European rivals – no external funding, and with our players training and competing together far less often – there is a genuine belief in the GB programme that Olympic qualification is a possibility.

The GB Women’s Team that will compete at the World Championship in Chiba, Japan from 2-12 August is as follows:

Emmilee Blowers
Sydney Brown
Victoria Charters
Georgina Corrick    
Chelsea D’Avilar
Hayley D’Avilar
Lauren Evans
Beth Fleming     
Carling Hare     
Chiya Louie
Kirsten Mack     
Amy Moore
Nerissa Myers
Steph Pearce     
Aubrey Peterson
Kendyl Scott
Chloe Wigington

The team staff is:

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

The GB Women will have a second official competition this year – the new European Super Six tournament for the top six teams in Europe, to be played at Hoofddorp in the Netherlands from 19-23 September.  But the team for this event has not yet been chosen, and may differ somewhat from the team that will play in Japan.

GB Under-19 Women

The GB Under-19 Women’s Team will travel to Staranzano, in northeast Italy, for the European Junior Women’s Championship from 16-21 July as defending champions, but with only five players from that title-winning team remaining.

On the other hand, new Head Coach Robbie Robison will have 10 players who played for the GB Under-19s in last summer’s World Championship in Clearwater, Florida, where the team was very competitive against some of the top countries in world softball.

Three players from last year’s GB Under-16 Team that came fifth in the European Cadette Championship – Hannah Edwards, Glenys McGuire and Diana Nesbitt – have moved up to this year’s Under-19 Team, which is as follows:

Katie Burge
Saskia Davies
Hannah Edwards
Beth Fleming
Laura Hirai
Andrea Johnson
Lauren King
Alexis Larrow
Olivia Lee
Glenys McGuire
Diana Nesbitt
Megan Parno
Sydney Robson
Morgan Salmon
Alana Snow
Kyra Watson

The team staff is:

Head Coach:  Robbie Robison
Assistant Coach:  Russ Snow
Pitching Coach:  Tina Whitlock
Team Manager:  James Hirai
Physio:  To be appointed

GB Under-22 Women

The GB Under-22 Women is a new team created this year to help players bridge the gap between junior and senior levels of play.  The team will play in the European Under-22 Women’s Championship in Trnava, Slovakia from 23-28 July, where a record-breaking 16 countries have entered the competition.

Unfortunately, the European Under-22 Championship finishes only a few days before the Women’s World Championship begins in Japan, which means that a number of players in the Under-22 age group who have been selected for the Senior Women’s Team won’t be able to play for the Under-22s.

The result is that 11 players selected for the GB Under-19 Team have also been selected for the U-22s, and there will be only one day between the end of the one tournament and the beginning of the other.  So Under-22 Head Coach Jo Malisani is planning for the Under-22 players not on the Under-19 Team to attend the Under-19 Championship in Staranzano, so the Under-22 players get a chance to bond and perhaps train together before their tournament begins.

The GB Under-22 Team is as follows (those shown with an asterisk are also playing for the GB Under-19s):

Katie Burge*     
Saskia Davies*
Hannah Edwards*    
Amie Hutchison        
Andrea Johnson*    
Lauren King*     
Alexis Larrow*
Olivia Lee*     
Casey Moritz
Megan Parno*     
Chelsie Robison       
Sydney Robson*
Alana Snow*     
Kyra Watson*
Sian Wigington    

The team staff is:

Head Coach:  Jo Malisani
Assistant Coach:  Gina Carbonatto
Pitching Coach:  Windy Thees
Team Manager:  Whitney Hollis
Physio:  Edwin Lam

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Carol parno 20:25

Well done girls.

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