Baseball NSW Female Tour to Japan – the First Steps in Growth Partnership with Fukuoka.

Baseball NSW is very excited to announce the roster of female players who will be embarking on a tour to Fukuoka, Japan in mid-October of this year.

Baseball NSW would like to recognise the female players who will be partaking in the tour to Fukuoka, Japan as the first steps in establishing our partnership with the Fukuoka Prefecture.

At the beginning of August, Baseball NSW and the Fukuoka Prefecture entered a Memorandum of Understanding. This partnership aims to surge a path forward in growing the game of baseball across both countries.  The Prefecture hosts a rich sporting environment and is at the centre of Kyushu and Yamaguchi markets, being one of Japan’s top ten most populated prefectures. They also serve as the focal point of the Asian market, which attracts many businesses and special education institutes.

The Memorandum of Understanding was formally ratified on the 4th of August 2023, at Blacktown International Sportspark with the Fukuoka Prefectural Delegation and Baseball NSW representatives. Baseball NSW was joined by Baseball Australia, and members of the BNSW Board, on the day.

Through this partnership, there will be a strong focus on developing men’s and women’s baseball through sport. The Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks and Kyūshū Honeys are among the premier baseball teams in Japan and are committed to sharing players, coaches, and touring teams with visiting teams this coming December.

Baseball NSW CEO, Mark Marino, is “excited to see our girls given the opportunity to participate in these internationally renowned events and look forward to continuing the development of our game through this partnership.”

The inaugural tour will see prominent female NSW representatives, Claire O’Sullivan, Maddison Heath, Jordan Richardson, and Ticara Geldenhuis travelling to Fukuoka to partake in training and games with the Kyushu Honeys. The players will be accompanied by Laura Neads as their coach.

The tour, beginning on the 18th of October, will see the players participating in joint practice and games with the Kyūshū Honeys team. The players will be given the opportunity to compete in the ‘Sanwa Shutter Cup’ exhibition match held on Saturday 21st where Baseball NSW CEO Mark Marino will be in attendance. They will then depart Japan on the 23rd of October, giving them nearly a week of training and game time.

Best of luck to these ladies in their travels. We hope you enjoy all this tour has to offer!