GB Slowpitch Head Coach Stephen Patterson has announced an 18-player squad for this summer’s European Slowpitch Championship in Sofia, Bulgaria, and eight of the players will be representing GB in this tournament for the first time.
The Championship will be played in Sofia from 10-15 July, and GB will be attempting to win the gold medal for the 11th straight time, against national teams from Germany, Slovenia, the Czech Republic, Ireland and Bulgaria.
In announcing the selections, Stephen Patterson said, “I am proud of every player in our programme. Everyone has worked hard and showed their interest at trials, training sessions and competitive events. I cannot fault anyone’s efforts or enthusiasm. And now, the hard work is just beginning as we aspire to another defense of the European Championship.”
The GB Slowpitch Team to compete in Bulgaria will be made up of nine women and nine men:
Kim Dubovec Miller
Alternates will be named later to ensure that there is cover in case of injury or external circumstances that prevent any of the selected players from travelling.
Strength in depth
The squad reflects a growing trend during Stephen Patterson’s time as Head Coach to introduce new players in major tournaments, a policy which has certainly produced a GB Slowpitch pool with great strength in depth.
In communicating with the players not selected for the tour, Stephen said, “Please do not be disheartened by this outcome. Use this to motivate yourself to strive for more. I have often said that it is your role to make yourself the next ‘must have’ player.
“My role is to put a team together that will offer Great Britain every opportunity to be successful,” Stephen added. “You have all contributed to this process and have made it very difficult in many ways for myself and the coaching staff when it came to final decisions.
“Many thanks for all your hard work and dedication, and long may it continue, as it is the passion of all our GB players — past, present, and future — that makes our National Slowpitch Squad strong.”
This article first published by the BSF at http://www.britishsoftball.org/news/view/new-players-in-gb-slowpitch-euro-selections