Softball Australia is pleased to announce the merging of current U19 and open national teams to two distinctive brand names and logos: Junior Steelers and Junior Spirit.
In an effort to align the four predominant national sides, the U19 men’s and women’s teams, currently known as Aussie Colts and Aussie Pride, will be recognised as junior divisions of their senior subsidiaries, Aussie Steelers and Aussie Spirit.
This initiative comes as part of the newly developed FTEM model, which aims to align the necessary development requirements from national age grade to national open grade representation. The unification of national team names will aim to reflect Softball Australia’s strategy as one that will focus on the strengthening of the alignment of these teams, and softball as a brand.
“This change reflects the progressive nature of softball in its entirety and is an opportunity to connect both our men’s and women’s pathways from junior through to senior. As a brand, we are always looking for ways to improve and I believe this is a great opportunity from a marketing and brand perspective,” said Marketing Manager, Jim Dorash.
“With the vast majority of athletes spending only one year in the U19 team before progressing through to the open side, it makes sense to allow these National teams to fall under the same banner. Getting a taste of what the senior side represents at a younger age is a great thing for our aspiring juniors and their development. How prestigious it would be for a young person to become a Junior Steeler or Junior Spirit player!” Dorash added.
The Aussie Colts are Australia’s most successful softball team having won gold medals in four consecutive Junior Men’s World Softball Championships from 1997 to 2008. In 2012. the Aussie Colts won bronze in Argentina.
The Juniors Steelers make their debut in Michigan as they take on the world at the 2016 Junior Men’s World Softball Championships this July.