Battswood making strides through adversity

Battswoods Thimna Maseti in action for his under-18 side against VOB Macaws in Chukker Road at the weekend. Maseti has also been announced in the under-15 reserves of the WCBF squad.

Lack of funding is a major headache for Battswood Baseball Club but they are determined to play a role in the development of the sport in the city.

Based in Chukker Road, Kenwyn, their players come from all corners of the city and providing transport to training sessions is one of their big challenges.

However, the club says their development programme will not be derailed by the obstacles they encounter along the way.

Battswood has a senior side playing in the Promotion League and was part of the Major League last season.

They also have under-10, 12, 15 and 18 sides, which is where the future of the club is and where the development focus lies.

Club secretary Diedré Marquard says they have been running a transformation and development programme for the past seven years and now have players who come from afar as Khayelitsha and Crossroads.

“The reality is daunting to sustain, in that the programme requires weekly transport costs, meals, supplying uniforms, equipment, annual federation fees and ad hoc expenses with no income from these players or any support,” says Marquard.

She says they have been knocking on the doors of numerous sporting bodies and government with no success but their objective of having a proper development side that will go on to be competitive in baseball will remain.

Battswood had several players from their junior sides taking part in the Baseball World Cup for the national side last year and continue to have numerous players representing both the Cape Town Baseball Federation and the Western Cape Baseball Federation.

“While each year players are selected to play at national level, we sincerely hope that our plea for assistance will be heard and we can continue to grow and develop our players,” says Marquard.

“The relationships built over the years extend beyond the boundaries of the baseball field, as the club’s aim is also to change lives through sport”, she said.

On the field, Battswood continues to show they can compete with the best the Cape has to give.

Their under-18 side has managed five wins in their 14 games in the under-18 championship. At the weekend they lost to VOB Macaws and will be hoping to add a sixth win next time out on the mound.

Their under-15s will be hoping to add to their solitary win after five games in their division before the season comes to a conclusion.

The club calls on anyone keen to offer services to them, to contact Shireen Bedford on 079 926 3271 or an send email to battswoodbaseballcub@gmail.com