CZE

Czech Softball Association

Zatopkova 100/2, 160 17 Prague 6, Czech Republic

info@softball.cz (Office)

s.cze@wbsc.org (WBSC Official e-mail of the NF)

+420 242429230 (Office)

https://softball.cz


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Anthem

Founded 1963

History

Beginnings of Bat-and-Ball Games 
The beginnings of bat-and-ball games (that is of baseball and softball) in the territory of the Czech Republic can be found in the YMCA organization. One of the people who worked at this Christian organization was Josef Antonín First, who was a sports instructor who taught the inhabitants of the Czech lands playgroundball and other American sports.
The large YMCA summer camp in Soběšín in the Sázava Region was a significant sports event of itself. There were two playgroundball fields at the camp and it was attended by several people who would eventually become important players.  The 1960’s – First Clubs and First Competitions 
One thing that contributed to the development of softball in the beginning was that due to the political situation, it was simply “cool” to play an American sport. Several clubs were founded around this area, e.g. Slavoj Čerčany, Softclub Praha, Canarias, Slavoj Praha and many more. The first competition games were played in years 1963/64. The 1960’s also saw a boom in the founding of university clubs. Such ball teams were founded in Prague as Faculty of Natural Sciences, Charles University (still active today as PV Praha), VŠCHT (University of Chemistry and Technology, later called Chemie and today active under the name Kotlářka), Faculty of Mathematics and Physics (today active as MFF), University of Economics (or Ekonom) and more. Outside of Prague, the clubs Technika Brno or VŠZ Brno were founded. In years 1966/67, league competitions were expanded to include a women’s division played in the form of tournaments. The first proper league competition was played in 1969 with clubs such as Chemie, PV or SVVŠ Michle competing.  The 1970’s – the Tournament Era 
Around the same time, numerous tournaments played an important role in promoting the sport outside of Prague as well. These would be attended also by international teams, or teams composed of the employees of the US Embassy to Czechoslovakia. In the 1970’s, league competitions had grown to such an extent that tournaments in the Prague area slowly disappeared and the tournament tradition was carried out only in out-of-Prague regions. At this time, the national competitions were given the name the National League of Czechoslovakia.  ESF Membership and Clubs’ First Trips Abroad 
In 1985, then President Pavel Knobloch applied for membership in the European Softball Federation. The associated membership that was granted allowed Czechoslovak teams to travel to European cup competitions. It was the ladies from Chemie who were the first team to travel to the European Champions’ Cup to Rome, where they succeeded when they finished fourth. The First International Contacts 
Under socialist Czechoslovakia, softball had no federal association, which made the development of international relations immensely difficult. In 1966, the President of the International Softball Federation (ISF) Don Porter accepted an invitation to Prague and eventually helped Czechoslovakia achieve membership in the ISF in 1973. Czech softball players would travel abroad to play ball only once or twice per year, and only with a special permission. In 1969, a Dutch women’s team arrived in Kotlářka and played a game against a team composed of the best players in Prague. In the same year, the Czechs would travel to Haarlem for a re-match. The1990’s and the First European Championship Titles 
The 90’s saw the development of independent Czech competitions, frequent participation of national teams in European and worldwide events, first European championship titles and the door opened for coaches from abroad who helped develop Czech softball. Our most successful national team (men) brought the first championship from Bussum, the Netherlands in 1997. A year later, the junior men’s team clinched the European title on home soil.  Czech Softball in 21st Century 
After the turn of the century, our teams in women’s categories claimed their first European championship titles. In 2002, cadet girls brought gold medals from Italy. Midget girls won the championship held in Mladé Buky in 2006. In 2010, U22 women won the title on home soil, and in 2014, junior women won in Rosmalen, the Netherlands.  The longest-serving President, Gabriel Waage has been in charge of Czech Softball since 2002. In 2017, Waage started serving his first term as President of the European Softball Federation, having been First Vice-President for four years prior. After we have successfully hosted many European events, we got the opportunity to organize world level events as well. The successful Men’s World Cup and Cadet Girls’ World Cup will be followed by the first Men’s Softball World Championship ever to be held on European soil (in Prague and Havlíčkův Brod).

GOVERNANCE

GABRIEL WAAGE

PRESIDENT

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VOJTECH ALBRECHT

SECRETARY GENERAL

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TOMAS KUSY

VICE PRESIDENT

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DUSAN SNELLY

MEMBER AT LARGE

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JAROSLAV KORCAK

MEMBER AT LARGE

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