It will be a real joy to welcome them back to New Zealand and Golden Oldies Softball next year in Christchurch.
They truly love the game and it is obvious when you meet them and see them play.
We first met the Wild Rovers in 2007 when they played in Rotorua and were an immediate hit with the other teams and literally anyone they met.
It was unsurprising and very appropriate that the other teams voted them Fun Team of the Tournament in Rotorua.
The driving force behind the team is Alacoque McMenamin and once again she is pulling together a team from various softball clubs in Ireland. She explained that the main criteria for selection is – If you have the money you’re in!
Stories abound from their first trip to New Zealand. They had a player, Wade Burrell, from the UK join the team. His thing, apart from Softball, is to cycle everywhere. For the Rotorua tournament he rode from Christchurch.
They also played well only, losing one game in the round robin to Public Missiles so don’t make the mistake of thinking they’re only here for fun.
So this southern hemisphere summer as you’re putting on the sunscreen share a thought for the Wild Rovers who will be meeting regularly in Dublin to train in mud and freezing weather – now that’s Love of the Game.
A side story around Wade’s epic Tour de New Zealand is that the Albion Krushers from Christchurch, who have entered for next year, spotted Wade as they travelled to Rotorua in the comfort of their own bus. He must have loved the experience because he now lives on the Coromandel on New Zealand’s east coast.
So welcome to the Wild Rovers – Let the craic begin!