SOFTBALL South Africa’s (SSA) preparations for upcoming major international tournaments gets into overdrive this weekend in Botswana where the senior men and women are set to trade bats with their southern African neighbour-rivals.
The three-day schedule in Gaborone – from Friday until Sunday, is international friendly which is sanctioned by the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) meaning that they will count in terms of the rankings. The South African men are ranked at 12 whereas Women are ranked at 35. They face a country whose men are ranked 13th while the women are at 33.
The South African men’s raison d’être in Botswana will be to comprehensively prepare the African World Championships qualifiers to be played from 8 to 13 January next year at the Mbolekwa softball diamonds in Attridgeville township, south of Pretoria. The top two teams will then qualify for the World Championships to be held in Prague, Czech Republic from the 13 to 23 June 2019.
On the other hand, the senior women will be preparing for the 2020 Olympic Qualifiers which will start with the African Olympic Qualifiers in May 2019.
The road to Japan commences with the African Olympic Qualifiers in May 2019 with the top two teams participating in the African/Europe Olympic Qualifiers.
The winners will then qualify for the 2020 Olympics.