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17World Softball/Alinea

The Philippines had been bracketed with powerhouse United States, Japan and New Zealand in Pool A of the elimination round of the International Softball ?Federation XII world men’s championship set to open Friday (Saturday in Manila) in Saskatoon, Canada.
Also in Pool A play of the two-group, 16-team qualifying round for slots in the Final 8 are Great Britain, Botswana, Denmark and Mexico. Entered in the relatrively light Pool B are Canada, Australia, Czechoslovakia, Argentina, Venezuela, South Africa, Puerto Rico and Indonesia.

The Boys, whose trip in Saskatoon was made possible by Cebuana Lhuiller, Pera Padala, Le Soleil de Boracay, Philten and the Philippine Sportrs Commission, arrived in the site of the tournament midnight Tuesday following a two-day three-stop air travel from Manila that saw them change planes in Vancouver and Calgary.

The Blu Boys immediately plunged into action the following day playing a two-game tuneup matches against the Americans and the Australians, which they both lost using their pair of rookie pitchers to give them the feel of international plays.

The bowed to the Americans,2-6, and were shutout by the Australians,0-7, in a pair of setbacks team officials said augured well in their hope of improving on their ninth polace finish in this tournament four years ago.

“The coaching staff used our two new pitchers so they can see how strong the kind of plays here and both Leo (Barredo) and Vic (Enriquez) we guess held their own against the strong opposition,” Amateur Softball Associatioin-Philippines operations manager Jun Veloso said in an overseas phone conversation.

“Although the boys played with hardly a wink, maganda ang inilaro nila, lalo na sina Barredo and Enriquez, whos bnopth had a pair of strikeouts each,” Velosos said.

Before enplaning to Canada Tuesday night (Manila Times), the boys called on ASA-Phil president Jean Henri Lhuiller, who gave them words to inspire them in their campaign and how to project the country’s and the Filipnos’ good image while competing against the best softball players in the world. (ENDIT)