North West Series 3 recap - Tigers and Thunder Win the Year

Wed 25 Aug 2021

This past weekend saw the close of the 2021 North West Series competition in Manchester. With 152 games played over the Series involving 24 teams, the NWS was a roaring success, giving softballers a chance to catch up with friends on the diamond for the first time in more than a year.

North West Series 1 in April was the first official tournament of 2021 in the North and players were chomping at the bit to get playing. 17 teams played over the weekend, 7 Rec on Saturday and 10 Comp on Sunday. The Rec competition was won by Freeze and Thunder took home the medals for Comp. 

North West Series 2 in June, again with 17 teams was another show of fantastic gameplay, this time with Tigers as Rec champions and Thunder didn’t let a game slip, taking home yet another set of NWS Comp medals.

North West Series 3 saw increased demand in the Rec competition, with entries capped at 10 teams, including 6 visiting teams; 2 from Merseyside, 3 from Yorkshire and a University of Nottingham alumni side. The weather forecast was, to put it simply - wet. With non-stop rain from first pitch, teams were soaked to the bone -  but didn’t dampen their spirit. The 10 teams were split into two2 groups of five and played a four-game round robin, before moving to a playoff format to determine the tournament champions. The Tigers went unbeaten all day, continuing their winning form throughout the North West Series into the final, and eventually beating Yorkshire Dales 4-3 with a spectacular walk off home run from James Wright. Finishing in the top spot at both NWS 2 and NWS 3 secured Tigers as overall Series winners, claiming the 2021 trophy!

In complete contrast to Saturday, Sunday’s Comp tournament was filled with sun and blue skies. Again with 10 teams, the day followed the same format as the Rec competition the day prior. Travelling Dodgers came top of Group A with 3 wins, whilst Sharks won Group B with 4 straight wins, including a victory against reigning NWS 1 & 2 champs, Thunder. However, the Thunder upped their game, winning their semi-final versus Travelling Dodgers, then conquered Spittin’ Camels 7-10 in the Comp final. With 3 consecutive Series wins, there was no doubt that Thunder would be crowned 2021 North West Series Comp champions after their outstanding performance across each instalment of the series.

Luis Arrevillagas, Tournament Organiser and BSUK North West Development Manager reflected, “We’re so happy to have completed the 2021 series without any hiccups. I’d like to say a huge thank you to each of the 24 captains who put their teams together for the three weekends of play, battling to get a full team together with players self-isolating at short notice has been a difficult job -  without your hard work our tournaments couldn’t have run so smoothly. Also a huge thank you to our umpires calling plays in all sorts of Manchester weather.”

Linni Mitchell, North West Coach added, “We’re so pleased to have been able to bring some sort of normality this year, teams seemed more grateful than ever to be able to play. Lots of hard work behind the scenes meant the tournaments were a success and enjoyed by all whilst following all Return to Play protocols. Looking forward to next years’ series which will be our 5th year!”

The North West Series will return in 2022!

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