The Road to Tokyo: Australia confirmed for Premier 12
Reasons for the removal of baseball and softball from the Olympics after Beijing 2008 are well documented. The first sports eliminated since 1936, both had been vulnerable for some time, despite baseball popularity in Japan, United States and Cuba – which dominated Olympics competition (three gold and two silver) after baseball medals were introduced in Barcelona in 1992.
What developed into an integrated and ultimately successful baseball/softball campaign for re-admission will enable both sports to compete in Tokyo in 2020 and it will feasibly ensure continued involvement of both at Olympic level into the future – probably at least until the Los Angeles games of 2028.
However, recent announcements by the World Baseball and Softball Confederation make it clear that nothing whatever should be taken for granted in view of an arduous qualifying process which is going to make it extremely tough for any country - including Australia - to join host nation Japan in the six-team Olympic Games tournament. READ MORE……
Premier 12 groups, venues announced
World Baseball Softball Confederation has announced pools and venues for the 2019 Premier 12 tournament, in which Olympic Games aspirant Australia will compete as currently seventh-ranked baseball nation.
The Premier 12 will be held between 2 and 17 November.
As host nation, Japan gains automatic entry to the 2020 Olympics, with the Premier 12 deciding two more of the countries qualified for Tokyo – the top Asia/Oceania finisher in the final standings (apart from Japan) and the top finisher from the Americas. READ MORE.....
Youngsters poised for baseball trip of a lifetime
Australian Baseball Alumni members and supporters extend our congratulations and very best wishes to the young players - and staff - selected to represent Australia at the 2019 WBSC Under 12 World Cup.
The tournament will be played in Tainan, Taipei, from 26 July to 4 August.
Qualifying for its third appearance at the tournament, Australia has drawn in Group B and will play United States, Korea, Mexico, Venezuela and Italy in the Opening Round, with three wins likely to be the minimum to earn a berth in the Super Round.
Competing with powerhouse baseball nations, Australia will enter the event with confidence and anticipation as our emerging stars embark upon a sporting and cultural experience that will stay with them forever. READ MORE......
Baseball lifer moves into administration
An Australian baseball identity with a wealth of experience in the sport, Melbourne Aces Assistant General Manager Craig “Frita” Kernick is relishing his new role in club administration and he is excited about the potential of the national league as it continues the transition to private ownership that commenced last season.
For many who have been around the sport in this country for a while, Craig “Frita” Kernick may be more readily identified as the committed bloke known to knock down outfield fencing while striving to take a fly ball – or as the versatile third-sacker who pursued an errant cap while simultaneously completing a defensive play in a vital ABL game many moons ago.
A person who has truly earned the sobriquet of “baseball lifer”, Kernick is one
of those rare persons who can be entrusted with doing his very best for the betterment of Australian baseball when afforded the opportunity. MORE....
Busan one aspect of long-term strategy
While addressing a range of opportunities currently challenging the sport at national and international levels, Australian baseball interests have been methodically going about identifying a squad suited to represent our country at the Under 18 Baseball World Cup scheduled in South Korea for late this month and into September.
Qualifying for the Super Round and finishing fifth at the tournament two years ago, Australia has enjoyed a lengthy engagement in a time-honoured international event that goes back nearly forty years – including a silver and five bronze medals for our teams over the journey.
With WBSC world ranking points there for taking, Australia will be directing its resources towards a strong showing whilst remaining cognisant of the bigger picture for our emerging young stars – many of whom have already stamped their credentials as players of the future. Former Major Leaguer and Baseball Australia Athlete General Manager Glenn Williams offered his take on the Under 18 tournament. MORE……….
Koreans snatch bronze in dramatic finale
Playing catch-up for the first few innings of its bronze medal game against Korea at the Under 18 World Cup, Australia fought its way back to take a lead in the eighth – when Solomon Maguire stroked a two-out RBI single – only to have victory unceremoniously ripped from its grasp by a two-run blast in the top of nine.
Although the 6-5 winning margin again underscored how competitive they had been against powerhouse baseball nations through the tournament, the Aussies would be ruing early defensive errors – especially given that they matched the Koreans in every other aspect of a terrific game of baseball.
While the outcome of the final game was a disappointment, our Australian squad should rightly feel intensely proud of its fourth-placed finish against such strong international opposition. Well done, all! READ MORE.......
Esteemed coach to head Victorian academy
An initiative of respected coach and mentor Peter Giles, the Academy of Baseball Excellence has recently been formally established and will commence early in 2020 from its home base of Boeing Reserve in Strathmore Heights, Victoria.
The Academy - which is idependent of state and national governing bodies - will prepare young Australian baseball players (aged 16-19) for entry into the United States college system, through provision of skill development, training sessions and regular overseas tours under the “Southern Stars” banner.
In addressing both an athletic and academic approach with participants and their families, the Academy of Baseball Excellence will provide young players with opportunities to improve their skills – in the classroom and on the field – while helping them secure placement into appropriate levels of college. MORE…….
After progressively scaling back its online presence over the past several months, Australian Baseball Alumni now regrets to inform our supporters that the Alumni project has neared the end of its shelf life and will effectively cease operations over coming weeks.
Established during 2014 as a not-for-profit initiative that was planned and delivered by Australian baseball lifers, the Alumni has consistently been able to honour its objectives of promoting the sport while engaging in activities to support our national teams and other dedicated projects.
From its inception, the Alumni raised substantial amounts of money in support of baseball programmes while delivering what we believe was a consistently high level of timely and engaging coverage of the sport.
There remains a wealth of quality baseball material on the our website, including interviews, coaching tips, umpiring insights and feature stories - along with masses of our own images and original news items. Australian baseball interests are invited to access any of that material and to freely utilise it in positive ways as deemed fit. READ MORE....