Al Doran featured on Saskatoon TV

July 26, 2009

Saskatoon, SK

Al Doran featured on Saskatoon TV
By John Thompson, Champ's Chatter/Diamond Dirt
In a newsclip on the local affiliate of CTV, the citizens of Saskatoon, and specifically softball fans among the thousands who are crowding into Bob Van Impe stadium for the XII International Softball Federation men's world championships, had a glimpse of the man behind the global collection of softball information, data and minutae. 
Al Doran, webmaster for the International Softball Congress, and creator and communications guru on the popular Al's Fastball website ( took a few minutes between games to be interviewed by CTV Saskatoon. The clip was featured on the 11:30 news Thursday night.
Al, from the greater Toronto area in Ontario, is a daily fixture in the media centre at field level beneath the stands, about 25' from home plate... His perch provides excellent sightlines to the heart of the on-field action. The ardent fastball fan combines his technical wizardry with his deep devotion to the sport, serving as a lightning rod internationally for men's softball throughout the world.
Each game at BVI is instantly and meticulously recorded in print form  as it happens, and fans throughout the softball world can follow the action based on Al's descriptions, and frequent literary observations and insights. The softball world is indeed totally 'round the globe as he receives frequent e-mails from fans following the action. Earlier this week, feedback was received from a fan listening on-board an ocean-going vessel on the other side of the planet, 10-12 time zones distant, and feedback from Australia and New Zealand is not uncommon.
Following his attendance as a fan at the successful ISC Championships in 1994 in Summerside, PEI, Canada, he was appalled to find no news coveage of that excellent international sporting event. Protestations would likely have fallen on deaf ears, so rather than complain, Al undertook to utilize available technology -  the growing facination with the internet - to strive to simply get the message out. 
Fifteen years later, Al's Fastball is one of, if not the best source, of information. His style is to encourage, and a times cajole, tournament organizers to take the time to use his website as a popular means to inform the fans... and its workng! Each day, year-round, a combination or media releases,  tidbits of facts and on occasion speculative softball innuendo are available for viewing. 
Al attends the major mens' fastball (softball) events throughout North America and will be providing service at the upcoming ISC club worlds in Quad Cites, USA (August 14-22) as well as the Softball Canada Nationals in St.Thomas, ON during the last week of summer (August 28 - September 6). At those championships, players competing on their national squads will be suiting up as team-mates with their club teams.
Al is a member of the ISC Hall of Fame, inducted as an honoured member of the Class of 2008 in Kimberly, Wisconsin.   

John Thompson

Interview by:
Veronica Jubinville
| Reporter/Anchor

CTV Saskatoon | t 306.665.9243 | f 306.664.6403 |
216 First Avenue North
Saskatoon, SK S7K 3W3

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