SNSWUA - 8 July 2012
The 2012 SAL International Youth Cup wrapped up under wet conditions in Sydney on Friday 6 July, but in no way did this dampen the spirit and enthusiasm of those involved.
Sixteen teams from across Australia and the Tasman united at BISP for five days of fast-paced, electrifying softball.
Players were equally represented with this year’s Cup hosting eight men’s teams and eight women’s teams from New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, South Australia and New Zealand, in addition to U17 and U19 Australian Boy’s and Girl’s squads.
The extensive representation of players and officials created immense opportunities in development and friendship. As usual, the tournament showcased the most elite youth softballers in the region.
A thirty-strong umpiring crew worked tirelessly through the tournament, covering ten hours of games each day, spread over six time slots.
The crew was led by TCU Leanne Gearside (New South Wales), who assured all games were covered by 3-man systems and the development needs of umpires were exceeded. Working with Gearside were deputies Ryan Thorneycroft (Victoria) and Mark Toft (Queensland).
Umpires benefited from video technology employed during the tournament, with games being filmed for later analysis. This added to feedback delivered by senior umpires.
New South Wales umpire Todd Winsor praised this initiative: “The gamut of national experience on the crew was invaluable to junior umpires looking to develop their own skills and knowledge of the game.”
Two umpires made the trip from Auckland, both excited to call some quality games and forge new friendships. Both Andrew McManus and Judy Leaper were impressed with the skill of the players and the hospitality provided by the rest of the crew. Australian umpires expressed their eagerness to work with both umpires again here in Australia and across the ditch.
TCU Gearside was impressed by the professionalism and dedication of the crew throughout the week-long competition.
“Thank you very much to everyone who umpired this year’s Youth Cup. I trust you had an enjoyable weekend and were able to take some things from your experience to help you in the future.”
Despite rain interfering with the final day of play and rendering two diamonds unplayable, the final series was action-packed and the blues put in a sharp performance.
Congratulations to the following Grand Final crews:
Men’s Youth Cup: Namadgi Dragons (6) def Western Civil (2)
Plate: Andrew McManus (NZ)
1st Base: Brett Tyler (VIC)
3rd Base: James Townsend (NSW)
Women’s Youth Cup: Australian U19 Women’s Green (7) def Australia U17 Girl’s (0)
Plate: Robert McIntosh (NSW)
1st Base: Steve Wallace-Yarrow (SA)
3rd Base: Brooke Whitfield (NSW)
Congratulations to Leanne Gearside and her teams of blues on a great effort!
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