GBFL Weekend 1 Recap: Back on the Diamond

Wed 26 May 2021

All photos: Hugh Scorgie

After a year-long Covid hiatus and then a rain-out on May 8th, the Great Britain Fastpitch League finally had its opening weekend this past Saturday!

All results can be found on the GBFL site here.

This season has so far featured exciting games and excellent turnout, despite the year away from competition. The 2021 season boasts five men’s teams and five women’s teams, and their captains and coaches are looking forward to an exciting year for their teams.

After a full weekend of softball, the Meteors are the league leaders after the first weekend on the men's side, as their offence was alive and well after a year away from the diamond. The team went 3-0 with wins over the GB U-18, Strays, and GB U-23s teams, scoring a total of 24 runs to opponents' combined runs of 2 in their games


The women's division, meanwhile, is currently led by the Angels with a 2-0-1 record. With the exception of The Mix, who went a perfect 2-0 in limited play, the women's division each played three games on opening weekend, with Barbarians, and Free Agents all taking one win each. The Angels and Barbarians ended up with a draw towards the close of the day due to time-constraints, while the Cardiff Celts did not take home a win opening weekend - but showed incredible promise for the upcoming months and seasons.

The men’s side also saw competitive games all day, with very close games between the U-18s, U-23s, Stags, and Strays. The Stags finished the weekend with 2 wins; following close behind with a win each are both GB teams. The Strays did not post their first win on the weekend but will definitely be looking to take one home in a few weeks’ time.

Prior to opening weekend, BSUK’s Alyson Spinas-Valainis got the chance to speak to some of the captains of the teams and hear about their outlook of the season.

Lee Grafton, captain of the Strays, was excited about his squad and their unique backgrounds, saying, "The Strays are, as the name suggests, a group of players who have not played together before but we are excited to be on a diamond again and hope we can give the others some serious opposition and a good game."

Steven Fullan, captain of the Meteors added, "We’re all looking forward to getting back on the field and defending our title. The Meteors have a great mix of old and young but most of the young players such as Matt Tomlin and Josh Peat have so much experience playing fastpitch that we can rely on them to show leadership."

On the women’s side, Holly Ireland, coach of the new Cardiff Celts, expressed her excitement for the season, "The Celts are super excited about their debut appearance this season. The girls have been working hard and are very hungry for some competition. We're looking to get some solid experience so we can continue to improve and show what Wales is capable of on the diamond!"

Also making an appearance in the league for the first time since 2018, co-captain of The Mix, Sian Wigington says, "The Mix are super excited for the upcoming season; it’s been a long time coming! As captain I couldn’t be prouder of the girl’s commitment over the last year. We have all been lucky enough to keep up with training and stay motivated to play. Whether it be over zoom, with friends and family or even out on the diamond, we’ve been hustling - now we're super excited to finally get back onto the diamond for this GBFL season so we can grow as a team, and all play the sport we love!"

The next GBFL Weekend will take place on 12 June at Farnham Park.

All updates and team standings, along with a full schedule, can be found on the new and improved GBFL site here.

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