GB players and coach selected to European Men’s Fastpitch Team

Mon 6 Aug 2018

On Sunday 2 September, the Men’s Fastpitch World Champions, the New Zealand Black Sox, will take on a newly-established Team Europe in a one-time challenge game in Havlíckuv Brod in the Czech Republic, and Great Britain will have representatives both on the team and on the coaching staff.

The game will be played right after the Intercontinental Cup and right before the Men’s European Super Cup, both of which will take place in Prague.

This special exhibition game will not be played over the regulation seven innings, but more likely will be around 10 innings, so that all the representatives from European countries can take part in the event.  Specific rules for the contest will be announced later.

The game will be broadcast live and for free by Playo.tv at baseballsoftball.tv.


Selections

Every one of the 12 countries that participated in this summer’s European Men’s Fastpitch Championship was given the right to nominate players for Team Europe, and Spain and France were also offered spots since their clubs regularly take part in the European Men’s Super Cup.

The Czech Republic and Denmark were allowed four players each, GB and the Netherlands two each, and other countries one.

GB pitcher Kyle Lynton and infielder/outfielder Ryan Martin have been selected as the two GB player representatives, and GB Men’s Team Head Coach Kevin Stockford has been named to the Team Europe coaching staff.

ESF President Gabriel Waage said, “This is a stepping-stone for the promotion of men’s fastpitch in Europe before the World Cup takes place in Europe for the first time in history next year.  It also shows the development of men’s fastpitch on our continent.  We had 12 teams participating in this year’s Europeans, and I believe that we can get to 18 or 20 teams quite easily in future.  Team Europe should be a great tool for the promotion of men’s fastpitch for every single country that has its players on the team.”


Players and staff

The full roster for Team Europe is:

Pitchers
Kim Hansen (Denmark)
Kyle Linton (Great Britain)
Michael Holobrádek (Czech Republic)

Catchers
David Mertl (Czech Republic)
Fabio Origlia (Italy)

Infielders
Václav Svoboda (Czech Republic)
Frederik Terkelsen (Denmark)
Eldrick Dijkhof (Netherlands)
Emeron Lourens (Netherlands)
Bar Shrim (Israel)

Outfielders
Valdemar Terkelsen (Denmark)
Wout Cnops (Belgium)
Hrvoje Jerbic (Croatia)

Utility players
Patrik Kolkus (Czech Republic)
Daniel Julenon (Denmark)
Ryan Martin (Great Britain)
Felix Schwan (Germany)
Anthony Cros (France)
Tomas Orlando Diaz Barrera (Spain)
Kalle Hjelm (Sweden)

The coaching staff for Team Europe will be:

Tomáš Kusý (Czech Republic)
Ben Ten Pas (Netherlands)
Kevin Stockford (Great Britain)
Jesper Panduro (Denmark)
Jaroslav Kor?ák (Czech Republic)


Reactions

Germany’s representative on the team, Felix Schwan, said, "I'm overwhelmed that I'm given the chance to play on a team with players that have that much experience and skill in softball.  To me, it's a big reward for everything I have invested in the sport that I love over the last years.  After participating in international tournaments and starting in the Extraliga with Painbusters this year, I believe the nomination for Team Europe to be a sign that I'm going in the right direction.  I'm eager to use this unique chance to face the world's best team and use the experiences for my future way in softball.”

The youngest player on the team, Czech pitcher Michael Holobrádek, said, "I can't wait!  It will be awesome to play against the best team in the world and at the same time being on a team that has never been together yet."

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