The Irish Baseball & Softball Federation (IBSF) was founded in 1989 with the primary purpose of furthering the growth and development of Baseball and Softball at all age and skill levels throughout Ireland. The IBSF is also responsible for the development of umpiring (refereeing) for the sports and runs clinics for fully qualified international umpires as well as novices. Baseball Ireland is the recognised National Governing Body of Baseball in Ireland and is responsible for the development and promotion of baseball on the island of Ireland. Organised baseball has been played in Ireland since the late 1990s. Ireland has entered a representatve national team into European competitions since 1996.