Riccardo Fraccari and Don Porter at the Dutch “Jubileum”

18/03/2012

It’s very unlikely that baseball will be as popular as soccer in The Netherlands but, as Rob Eenhoorn (Technical Director of the Dutch Federation, KNBSB) warns: “Never say never. We just won a World Championship and not so long ago this looked simply like a dream”.

Riccardo Schiroli in Rotterdam

It’s very unlikely that baseball will be as popular as soccer in The Netherlands but, as Rob Eenhoorn (Technical Director of the Dutch Federation, KNBSB) warns: “Never say never. We just won a World Championship and not so long ago this looked simply like a dream”.

At the 100th anniversary of the KNBSB (in The Netherlands named “The Jubileum”) there was room for memories, dreams but also for reality. Eenhoorn and his softball colleague Craig Montvidas engaged themselves in a public discussion (moderated by TV journalist Mark Smeets, the father of former Team Netherlands catcher Tjerk) about baseballsoftball and their future in the Olympics with IBAF President Riccardo Fraccari and the President of the International Softball Federation (ISFDon Porter.

Eenhoorn and Montvidas had to face realism, when the 2 Presidents explained that reinstatement was also a matter of relations and politics.

“We are aware of that” said Eenhoorn “But facts also matter. We will follow our path and try to achieve the most”.

Don Porter showed appreciation for this attitude: “Never give up, this is the point”, but shared another view with Riccardo Fraccari.

“We are fans, these games are our life” said Fraccari “But if we want to have more chances to be back in the Olympics, we will have to be ready to go in the direction of what the general public likes”.

Fraccari smiled with the rest of the people who attended the “Jubileum” at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam, when Don Porter shared with everybody his memories as a baseball player.

The attendance listened with attention to Fraccari when he said: “I know how much the Dutch want to win. I have umpired here many times”.

After the celebration, the President of IBAF and the President of ISF continued their discussion on the details of a joint bid. It’s not the time for an announcement yet, but it’s definitely possible to share some optimism.