Despite being the long shot as the lone European representative in the inaugural 2018 Asia Pacific Cup in Sydney, Team Italy women’s softball manager Enrico Obletter along with coaches Federico Pizzolini and Lisa Birocci Banse had a lot to be proud about. With two wins over New Zealand and two close games against Japan and the Aussie All-Stars, Team Italy played with grit throughout the international competition and never gave up the fight.
The second annual Asia Pacific Cup brings together some of the best softball players in the world with six of the world’s top 12 teams competing in four-day round-robin tournament at the Blacktown International Sportspark in Sydney, Australia from January 31- February 3, 2019. Ninth-ranked Team Italy is one of seven competitors that will play 21 games to determine rankings for the five playoff contests on the final day of the tournament. On Thursday, January 31 at 1:30 pm (local time), the Italians play against fourth-ranked Australia and return under the lights at 7:30 pm (local time) to face Australian powerhouse, the Aussie Spirit.
The fierce competition continues when Team Italy competes in two afternoon battles on Friday, February 1 beginning with a tug-a-war against fifth-ranked Chinese Taipei at 1:30 pm (local time) followed by a 4:30 pm (local time) game against 12th-ranked China. The Azzurre women’s softball squad kicks off the Saturday, February 2 program with an early 11 am (local time) start against 11th-ranked New Zealand and later takes on second-ranked Japan at 4 pm. (local time). The top four teams will advance to the finals while the remaining squads will compete in a consolation round on Sunday, February 3, 2019. Forza #Italia! #LetsMakeItHappen
by Roberto Angotti