Softball in Africa gets a boost from world body

The International Softball Federation (ISF) endorsed the establishment of the Confederation of Softball in Africa at its 23rd congress in the Philippines last weekend.

The endorsement is a giant step towards softball development on the continent.

This will also encourage countries where softball is not played to play the sport.

Countries like South Africa, Botswana, Cameroon, Senegal, Zambia, Namibia and Kenya have been supporting the formation of a continental body and we are happy that the ISF finally agreed to the request.

It will be formed in March next year.

You see, the previous set-up was not benefiting softball in Africa because the continental body was focusing both on softball and baseball.

We should not just be excited by the ISF's endorsement, though.

This should be the beginning of the challenges facing softball authorities as we expect them to work tirelessly to seek sponsorships for the game.

Softball is a fast-growing sport and it really boggles the mind why the corporate world is shunning this beautiful sport.

Maybe it is a different case in other countries, but here in Mzansi many companies are not investing in the ball game.

The companies prefer to invest in sports like soccer, cricket and rugby.

Companies like LimDev, a Limpopo parastatal, should be commended though after pumping more than R1 million into softball in the province.

Their involvement has motivated the players and this has made softball much more entertaining.

I know that softball in Western Cape has also been taken care of by the provincial government.

The Western Province Softball Federation (WPSF) is succeeding because of its marketing strategy and other provinces should take a leaf out of the Capetonians' way of marking their games.

This week the WPSF is expected to announce a company that will solely deal with wooing more companies to sponsor their programme.

It is also encouraging for softball development after South Africa won the rights to host the World Junior Women Championships in 2011.

We hope companies and the government will come forward and assist South Africa to stage a successful event in 2011.