New working groups hold first meeting to discuss future of international Baseball, Softball and Baseball5

New working groups hold first meeting to discuss future of international Baseball, Softball and Baseball5
25/08/2020
WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari chaired the online meeting and encouraged the members to “think outside the box.”

The evaluation by the World Baseball Softball Confederation of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on its events continued with a kick-off meeting of two new working groups for Baseball, Softball and Baseball5.

The working groups, which includes WBSC Secretary General Beng Choo Low as well as members of the WBSC Executive Board, different WBSC National Federations and Commissions, including the co-chairs of the WBSC Athletes Commission – Justin Huber (baseball) and Maria Soto (softball), have been created to focus on coming up with new ideas and proposals on how to organise WBSC events in the future taking into consideration COVID-19 health and safety measures.

WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari chaired the online meeting and encouraged the members to “think outside the box.”

“Now is the time for change,” President Fraccari said. “We need to evaluate our sport and to see how we can modify our sport to adapt to the new norm.

“With this current climate with the coronavirus our sport has many strengths, for example, it is a non-contact sport and we are watching how other sports are performing in the coronavirus environment, including the Mexico Prospects Baseball League, which has started successfully in Guadalajara in a bubble environment.

“We have to learn to live in this situation. The health of our players, officials and fans is the number one priority. We have to show our National Federations a safe way to play.”

The working group's members are:

Baseball: Paul Seiler (USA), Aracelis Leon (VEN), Didier Seminet (FRA), Chris Day (TPE), Mark Moreau (RSA), Chet Grey (AUS), Justin Huber (AUS).

Softball: Tommy Velazquez (PUR), Beng Choo Low (MAS), Craig Cress (USA), Gabriel Waage (CZE), Rex Capil (NZL), Mashilo Matsetela (RSA), Maria Soto (VEN).

The two working groups will now meet individually to come up with some ideas and proposals, which will be evaluated by the WBSC Executive Board in November.

Five out of eight WBSC events have been postponed this year, with the WBSC U-18 Men’s Softball World Cup being held in New Zealand in February while the WBSC U-15 Baseball World Cup and the WBSC Women’s Baseball World Cup are scheduled to take place in October and November respectively.