Canadian Nationals Future

February 6, 2014


Hello Fastball Players,

Topic: Rejuvenate Senior Men's National Championships.

Before I go any further please feel free to pass on this email to whoever you have in your men's fastball contacts, my email is jeffellsworth19@gmail.com and my cell is 1-902-856-2519 if anyone can get back to me with there opinion by Feb 15th, 2014 that would be greatly appreciated.  I will be compiling a report to Softball Canada to table at the 2014 AGM in Charlottetown PEI in November.

........ It has been brought up to me dozens of times over the past couple of years that our Canadian National Championship tournament has to change its format/dates/style etc before the event is dead in the water.

After talking with several players from various provinces they all felt that a change in date would be a good start and Canada Day weekend in July was mentioned on a few occasions. Reason being there are anywhere from 7-9 teams competing at the ISC World Championships every year and a lot of teams use the ASA National championships as a tune up for the ISC's so why not have our own championship the first big one of the year instead of the last one of the year.  Plus this would allow for more promotion on the Eastern/ Western Championships to take place in mid to late August as opposed to the Eastern's date now of early September.

Softball Canada has deemed the event an open championship meaning that any team in any province can go therefore having no need for provincial qualifiers. Now if provinces were still wanting to have qualifiers have them in late August for the next calendar year, that way a team has all winter to fundraiser instead of a month.

Second the format has to change, the old school days of an 8 game round robin has to be put to bed. Having an event like the ASA with a double round knockout would be best case but with an ISC II twist. After the first 2 games on everyone's schedule then teams would be reseeded into another level therefore make it justifiable to spend the money to go away and play.   Currently with everyone making the playoffs at the Canadian National Championships makes the event less serious during round robin play therefore the quality of ball is reduced and fans are picking up on that and not supporting during the week but are waiting for the weekends games because they have meaning. Having a double round knockout makes every game count. For the teams that are not successful in their first couple of games at least there will be a division to strive to win.  So it's a combination of ISC/ASA format we should combine.

This style event could run Thursday morning through to Sunday night. Therefore players would only need to use one holiday day with it being Canada Day weekend making it more attractive to attend. In addition it would cut down on hotel costs being there less times as well has food costs, car rentals etc.  A large part of the population at Canadian Nationals attend the ISC and 90% of the players would love to be done traveling mid August and before school starts, most players have young families and school starts the next day usually after Nationals are over.  Speaking for the Maritime league and Eastern's this would allow earlier weekend to finish off their seasons and not wait to the cold weather weekends in September. I'm not to familiar with the "B" Westerns format.

Something has to change soon to try and make the event bigger and better. We at the men's level are fighting to get the sport back to the Olympic level but were are failing in our own country with running our national major event.  It's time to hear from the players. We are the ones requesting time off from work, traveling away from our families and making the commitment it's time to let your voice be heard.

Please send me your feedback weather or not you agree or offer and suggestions you have. Everyone who responses back will be given a copy of the final report with all the suggestions that will be made to Softball Canada.

Jeff Ellsworth
Team First Training Centre
902-853-2941 home
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