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BBF sponsors UK Team for the 2017 ‘Super Cup’ coach-pitch baseball tournament

02/16/2017, 7:00pm GMT
By BBF

BBF Sponsors UK Team for the 2017 ‘Super Cup’ coach-pitch baseball tournament.

Thursday, 16 February - BBF supporting Team UK U10 coach-pitch trip to Prague

The British Baseball Federation has pledged its support to a new overseas tournament opportunity, which will see a United Kingdom U10 team traveling to the Czech Republic for the 2017 ‘Super Cup’ coach-pitch baseball tournament.

Now in its seventh year, the Super Cup tournament is organised by the Czech Institute for Baseball Development (IBD), and will see 24 teams from across Europe playing three days of tournament baseball at the Tempo Titans Complex in Prague.

IBD have been promoting the U10 coach-pitch format across the Czech Republic for many years. Their Super Cup initiative has helped spread the popularity of the format across Europe, and for the first time in tournament history, a team from the United Kingdom will be participating.

The project has been spearheaded by Team UK General Manager (and Leicester Blue Sox U10 coach) Matt Crawshaw. Matt said: “At the end of last season, we saw six new U10 teams compete in the first-ever coach-pitch YNBC. Following the success of that event, I approached coaches from those clubs to recruiting players that could fly the flag for the UK at the 2017 Super Cup."

Following a particular period of consultation with club coaches and the families of players, the provisional Team UK squad has been selected as follows:

  • Reuben Crawshaw (Leicester Blue Sox)
  • Ben Fox (Leicester Blue Sox)
  • Ryan Gulliver (Brighton Baseball)
  • Ruby Hilland (Brighton Baseball)
  • Toshiki Kaneyama (London Mets)
  • Benjamin Mills-Knutsen (London Mets)
  • Arnav Rai (Leicester Blue Sox)
  • Megan Rollins (Leicester Blue Sox)
  • Harry Walsh-Back (Brighton Baseball)
  • Sam Yates (Brighton Baseball)

The BBF has donated financial support which will go towards covering tournament costs and the British Baseball Federation brand will be featured on Team UK hoodies and polos.

Matt added, “With the recent fall in the pound, our expected tournament costs have increased. We are therefore very grateful for the generosity of the BBF, which will go a long way towards ensuring that players and families can afford to make this inaugural trip to Prague for the 2017 Super Cup.”

The provisional Team UK squad will be added to in the coming weeks as the target roster size is in the region of 13-15 players. Final arrangements are in progress to add players from both London Sports and LYBL to the team. 

BBF President Gerry Perez said, "The UK U10 Travel Team is a great initiative. The UK U10 team exemplifies our clubs' dedication to providing opportunities to the next generation of youths playing baseball. Our sponsorship reflects our desire to collaborate with clubs that share our vision of how to support our mutual commitment to provide kids with the opportunity to play baseball, not only in Great Britain but  abroad."

Team UK will be flying together from Heathrow to Prague on 1 June 2017. The three-day tournament takes place from 2-4 June 2017. The team will then return to the UK on 5 June 2017.

The final squad for the tournament will be confirmed on 15 March, with Team UK practice scheduled for all three Bank Holiday Mondays in April and May at a venue to be advised.

Liam Carroll (National Teams Official), said: "Great Britain Baseball is behind this initiative, and we'll be following along in June. I’m particularly looking forward to seeing prospects for future Great Britain teams, especially as we move closer to the re-launch of an U12 team for the 2018 European Championship Qualifier.”

BBF-affiliated club coaches for the tour will be:

  • Robin Banerjee (Brighton Baseball)
  • John Gulliver (Brighton Baseball)
  • Joshua Miles-Knutsen (London Mets)
  • Steve Rollins (Leicester Blue Sox)

If any families or coaches know of eligible players who also wish to be considered for selection, please email matthew.crawshaw34@gmail.com for further details. To be eligible, a player would need to have been under the age of 10 on 1 January 2017 and a UK resident.

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