Junior Spirit hopefuls set their sights on Florida

Junior Spirit hopefuls set their sights on Florida

Australia’s best young female softball players have taken the next step towards representing their country as they take on the world in the USA this year.

The recently selected players are hoping to earn a place on the Junior Spirit team that will represent Australia at the XII WBSC Junior Women’s World Championship in Clearwater, Florida.

Junior Spirit Head Coach Kerrie Porter.

Junior Spirit Head Coach Kerrie Porter.

The 28-player squad includes several of the standout performers at the recent Under 19 National Championship tournament in Perth. Tournament winners New South Wales have 10 players in the squad.

Junior Spirit Head Coach Kerrie Porter said the team to go to Clearwater would be chosen after a final selection event to be held in March-April. Details of that event will be finalised soon.

The XII WBSC Junior Women’s World Championship will be held at the Eddie C Moore Complex from 24-30 July 2017.  It will the first time that Clearwater has hosted a WBSC world championship.

Players who miss out on the final team are eligible for selection in a squad that will play at a high-level Stars and Stripes tournament in Las Vegas in front of college coaches and professional scouts, before heading north to compete in the Canada Cup Gold tournament being held in Surrey, British Columbia from 10-16 July.

The tours are being conducted by SportsLink International and co-ordinated by three-time Olympic medallist Brooke Wilkins.

Wilkins said athletes on the tour would undoubtedly improve their skills and benefit from high-quality coaching and competition, adding that the standard of competition will be consistently higher than the players have experienced in Australia.

“It is all about providing players with the opportunity to improve their skills and experience against international opposition and be able to showcase this development in front of national selectors in the future” she said. “Providing the right environment on and off the field to build athletes’ competencies, confidence, character and connection with each other, will optimise their developmental progress.”

Eddie C Moore Fields

Eddie C Moore Fields in Clearwater, Florida, venue for the XII WBSC Junior Women’s World Championship.

The 2017 Junior Spirit squad

Shinai Gibbons, Qld
Kelsey Griffen, NSW
Gemma Hamilton, Vic
Chloe Holman, NSW
Natasha Holt, Vic
Breanne Honeybrook, NSW
Amber Hood, SA
Georgia Hood, SA
Montana Kearns, NSW
Shannon Keevers, NSW
Rhiannon Kemp, Qld
Rachel Kraak, Qld
Kandra Lamb, NSW
Rachel Leong, WA
Haley Marcshall, SA
Jamie Mead, SA
Gabrielle Plain, NSW
Narisse Privitera, Vic
Sara Riou, WA
Rebecca Schafer, Vic
Maddison Schofield, WA
Maddison Smith, NSW
Tarni Stepto, NSW
Brianna Trim, NSW
Tegan Trindle, Qld
Tia Waters, Qld
Tamieka Whitefield, Qld
Tiffany Zuch, Qld

Head Coach – Kerrie Porter (NSW)

Assistant Coach – Nathan Jones (WA)

Assistant Coach – Chantelle James (WA)

Battery Coach – Gaye Ledingham (NSW)

Team Manager – Annette Tsitsikronis (NSW)