Baseball and cricket hit it off

By David Searle*

THE 2016/17 Hobart Summer Baseball League (HSBL) hits off with a “Come and Try” Day on Sunday 25 September, followed two days later by the commencement of the two-week pre-season competition.

The second Come and Try Day is scheduled for Sunday 2 October.

The off-season has been very eventful with a partnership developed with Cricket Tasmania, meetings in Launceston to discuss the formation of a league there and the introduction of two new teams to the HSBL.

There has long been an association between baseball and cricket, with some of Australia’s best cricketers having a background in baseball and many cricket teams incorporating baseball skills in their training.

When baseball was first played in Hobart in the late 1800s, the game was played during the winter so cricketers were able to hone their skills during their off-season.

Baseball Tasmania was approached during the off-season for players to pass on their skills to cricket players and the league’s Chris Chalker and Jimmy Clout have been conducting coaching clinics with the North Hobart Cricket Club.

In August, Brad Harman from the Melbourne Aces provided insights into fielding techniques and activities as part of a Cricket Tasmania Representative Coaching Course held at Blundstone Arena, not only for members of Cricket Tasmania but also for members of the HSBL.

These clinics were of great benefit to all who attended and were arranged by John Hayes, Cricket Tasmania’s coach development manager, who incidentally, will suit up for the Eastern Athletics in the upcoming HSBL season.

In addition, members of the HSBL have been conducting off-season training at the TCA indoor cricket nets, the complex managed by the coach of the North Hobart Cricket Club, Wade Townsend.

We are looking forward to our ongoing association with Cricket Tasmania and as the league continues to expand, more and more



cricketers trying their hand at baseball.

In 2016/17, the Raiders and Banjos Orioles Black will join reigning premiers the Dragons, Banjos Orioles Orange, Northern White Sox, Hotel Soho Hobart Blue Jays and the Eastern Athletics in battle for the Hubble Edwards Shield.

The roster proper will commence on Sunday 9 October and run until early March 2017 with 21 rounds and each team playing 18 games.

All games will be played at Prince of Wales Bay Recreation Reserve, 1 Gepp Parade, Derwent Park.

The Northern Pirates from Wollongong celebrated their 50th anniversary this year and once again, representatives will visit Hobart in October to play a series of games against representatives from the HSBL.

Last season’s visit by the Pirates proved to be a huge success and the league is looking forward to another weekend of big hits, fun and frivolity – and that is just in the celebrity game.

With the expansion of the league, our new association with Cricket Tasmania, our continued association with the Northern Pirates and proposed improvements to the Prince of Wales Bay Recreation Reserve, these are exciting times for the HSBL.

For further information about the HSBL, you can visit our website at www.baseballtasmania.com, our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/HSBLTAS or phone 0468 927 363.

For information about the Launceston Baseball League, visit their Facebook page at https://m.facebook.com/Launceston-Baseball-League- 523170964542012/

*David Searle is the president of Baseball Tasmania.

Caption: Members of Baseball Tasmania attending a baseball session run by Brad Harman, of the Melbourne Aces. Photo credit: John Hayes.

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About the Author: Hobart Observer

The Hobart Observer is your monthly community newspaper, reaching over 24,000 homes and businesses in and around the City of Hobart. It is the product of Nicolas Turner, Justine Brazil, Ben Hope, Simon Andrews, Tobias Hinds and guest contributors, with support from advertisers.

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