The philosophy of Masters Softball is to promote lifelong competition, friendship and understanding between mature sportspeople, regardless of age, gender, race, religion or sport status. The only restriction is the minimum age – participants must be 35 years and over.
Masters competitions play both fastpitch and slowpitch Softball.
The growth and popularity of Masters Softball in Australia has been phenomenal, with all States including Masters events in their competition fixtures.
There are many national and international Masters events, all of which offer physical activity in a social environment and festival atmosphere. The first official Masters Games was held in 1985 in Canada. It offered 16 summer sports, including Softball. Since then Softball has become one of the highest participant sports in Masters Games, including at the following events:
- The biennial Pan Pacific Masters Games has been held on the Gold Coast since 1996. The 2008 games attracted participants from 16 countries and every Australian State and Territory, including remote locations like Nhulunbuy on the Gove Peninsular (NT).
- The biennial Alice Springs Masters Games is staged in October. The first Alice Springs Masters Games (then the Central Australian Masters Games) in 1986 was only the second event of its kind to be staged in the world. The Alice Springs Masters Games have earned the reputation of the friendly games because of the camaraderie of the participants, the good spirited nature of the competition and the atmosphere of the Games village. More than 100 competitors, officials and volunteers have participated in every Games since 1986 – a remarkable achievement for all those people.
- The first multi-sport Masters Games was the inaugural World Masters Games held in Toronto, Canada in 1985.
The 2009 VII World Masters Summer Games was held in Sydney in October. The Softball competition attracted 198 teams and 2,650 players from 11 countries.
The 1996 Australian Olympic Softball team entered in the A Grade section, winning gold. The oldest Softball player in the competition was 75 years old.
Updated 29 June 2012