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Softball Australia introduces "The Summer Slam - Fully Loaded Softball"

19 November 2018

SOFTBALL: After having their sport reintroduced to the Olympic Programme for the first time in 10 years, Australian Softball has upped the ante, announcing an innovative and world-leading new competition today. 

The Summer Slam – Fully Loaded Softball, is a world-first ‘Big Bash’ style competition and represents a new era for softball. Fast-paced and high-performance, this new format will offer shorter games, more action, less downtime and more runs scored. 

Launched today at Blacktown International Sports Park, where the competition will be hosted in February 2019, CEO of Softball Australia, David Pryles said the new format will be a game changer for the sport. 

“The Summer Slam – Fully Loaded, will reshape the landscape of the game in Australia and provide edge of your seat experience for spectators and fans, as well as a high-pressure environment for our talented players,” he said. 

“Held in the world-class 2000 Olympic Softball venue, Blacktown International Sports Park, the competition will draw new audiences to the sport and fuel the passion that many past and present players have for this great game. 

“Softball Australia is also looking forward to rolling out this new format agrass roots softball clubs across the country, with the fast-paced nature of the game providing opportunities for clubs and players to play the game in a shorter format.” 

New rules which have been designed specifically for the competition mean players will perform under high-pressure right from the very first pitch. 

Softball Australia 1

New rules include: 

  • Shorter three-innings game 

  • The homerun fence distance will be reduced to increase the number of homeruns and runs scored in the game 

  • If scores are tied after three innings, a tiebreaker innings, with one out per team, will be played to determine a winner 

  • Runners starting on base each innings 

  • No warm-up pitches between innings 

  • No offensive or defensive conferences for coaches 

  • After each out, the ball goes directly back to the pitcher, rather than being thrown around the diamond by the fielding team  

Captain of the Australian National Softball Team, the Aussie Spirit, Stacey Porter said she is excited to compete with her teammates and other great international softballers in a new and challenging format. 

“I am extremely excited about the concept behind the competition.  

“I can’t wait to get out there on the diamond and compete in such a high-pressure, but fun environment alongside not only my Aussie Spirit teammates, but also some superstars of softball from around the world,” she said. 

The event will feature a mix of Australia’s most elite female softballers, along with international players from some of the world’s top 12 ranked teams. The players will be split across six franchised teams, with the competition broadcast live on Fox Sports. 

Fans and supporters also have the opportunity to get involved, with the ability to vote on logos and team names for the six teams on the Fully Loaded Softball website. 

Liana Buratti
olympics.com.au

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