Sunday 29 March 2015
Played throughout in the characteristically positive and fun-filled spirit of the event, the nineteenth Victorian Masters Baseball Carnival was wrapped up in picture-perfect conditions at Prince of Wales Reserve this afternoon.
Three days of jam-packed action concluded with finals in each of the age groups.
In 45 Plus Division One, it was Big Cat Tomatoes who delivered the goods with a strong 9-4 result over Coburg – another perennial finalist – while Tassy Tigers (team image to come) excited their band of engaged supporters with a thumping 12-1 result over a Tomatoes second side playing in its first 45 Plus Division Two series in this group. For the Tassy boys, too, it was their first finals appearance – and one that delivered their first title in nine years of travelling across for the series.
With finals contenders not decided until the early Sunday afternoon round, the 35 Plus Division saw two quality outfits in Pandas and Big Cat Tomatoes pitted against each other. Gaining an early break behind some stellar pitching, however, Pandas were never threatened on their way to a 14-2 mercy rule outcome that reinforced their status as a Masters powerhouse both at this series and elsewhere.
While we congratulate the winners and we acknowledge the efforts of all teams making it to the playoff stage, we pay homage to all of our participants – and all of our twenty-one teams – for making this series another outstanding success.
Masters sport can be a seriously uplifting activity, which largely explains and defines the popularity of this particular unique event. Once again, all teams, officials and supporters embraced the spirit of participation, healthy competitiveness, social engagement and fun that underpin the Carnival.
To the new team entries, and to all of our new players, we again say welcome. To all we extend our congratulations and our appreciation for the manner in which you honoured and further strengthened those Carnival principles.
We extend our thanks to the Ballarat City Brewers, Mounties and Alfredton clubs for having their grounds in terrific condition for the event, and for maintaining the fields over the course of the weekend. Our fourth ground - the Field of Nightmares – was a significant improvement on previous years, complete with portable mound generously loaned by Werribee Baseball Club.
We thank the City of Ballarat for its continued support of the Carnival and we hope that council will see fit to further improve and develop the overflow field in view of the increased number of teams which next year will be capped at an absolute maximum of twenty-four.
While the support of all three clubs is very much appreciated, we particularly acknowledge the herculean effort of host club Ballarat City Brewers, which did another fantastic job in efficiently and good-naturedly meeting the demands created by a large group of visitors.
We thank Umpires’ Coordinator Bruce Suttor and his group of adjudicators and we trust that scorers, drivers and others providing assistance to teams will be extended the credit and the recognition that they richly deserve.
While dates for the 2016 Carnival have not yet been set, there appear to be two choices available to us – 18-20 March (likely to be the week after Baseball Victoria finals) or 1-3 April (middle weekend of School Holidays). A decision will be made in the near future, after both options have been assessed.
Well done again, all! And best wishes.
Kingsley Collins (Administrator)