3 November 2011
Softball Australia is pleased to announce the induction of three of Softball’s most decorated members into the 2011 International Softball Federation (ISF) Hall of Fame.
Bob Harrow (ACT) - Coach
Bob has dedicated 20 years of service to Softball in Australia, particularly to the elite women’s and men’s programs. Since 2000, Bob has been Head Coach of the Australian Open Men’s team, the Aussie Steelers, achieving great success, including winning the 2009 ISF XII Open Men’s World Championship.
Further to his involvement with Australian National teams, Bob has also influenced the national elite competition. Following the 1986 ISF VI Women’s World Championship, and the Australian Men’s debut at the 1988 ISF VII Men’s World Championship, he recognised the need for another tier of elite national competition. His vision included both male and female programs, which aimed to maximise the opportunities for top tier and emerging Australian players to gain high quality competition. Bob’s vision resulted in the National Fastpitch Softball League, conducted from 1989 until 1996. Over the seven seasons the League operated, it attracted more than 750 players, 200 umpires and 75 statisticians. The League was an invaluable developmental breeding ground for males and females aspiring to represent their country. It was particularly vital for the women’s development pathway, with the potential for participants to be a part of the first Australian Women’s Olympic Softball team.
Throughout Bob’s decorated career he has been recognised at numerous levels. In 2009 after the Aussie Steelers World Championship win, he was inducted in the Softball Australia Hall of Fame. In 2010, he was honoured with Softball Australia Life Membership and has been awarded both Softball Australia and ACT Coach of the Year honours.
Australian AIS Women’s Head Coach, Kere Johanson recalls:
When I hear Bob Harrow’s name mentioned, it reminds me instantly of not being predictable. Being innovative and creative enforces change on everyone. Not only has Bob brought change to the game throughout Australia, he has introduced it to the rest of the World and beaten them all. Bob looks the world in the eye, calls it how he sees it but at the end of the day he is a coach who is genuine and fair.
Paul Maisey (Vic) – Player
Paul debuted for the Aussie Steelers, in New Zealand, in 1995. He was the 32nd male player to represent Australia and played in 24 international tournaments. During his career, he played in three World Championships – 1996, 2000 and 2004 – winning a bronze medal in 2004 with the Aussie Steelers. Paul retired from international competition after the 2006 Commonwealth Men’s Championships.
Following his retirement, Paul continued to play at state level, representing Victoria until 2008. He led Victoria to multiple national titles in 17 years, at the same time receiving individual batting awards. Paul has also made a significant contribution at club level, helping to establish Metrans Softball Club in Melbourne. He continues his strong association with Softball by coaching and mentoring young players.
Paul was inducted into the Softball Australia Hall of Fame in 2011 for his outstanding services to Australian Softball over a career spanning 15 years.
Bryan Edwards, Softball Victoria Director and Victorian Open Men’s Coach recalls:
Paul has been a significant player for the State of Victoria and was instrumental in the development of the team that won four John Reid Shields. Paul has always led by example and has been a truly professional player – he has always acted with the highest integrity, both on and off the diamond. Paul’s passion and commitment to the game of Softball could not be questioned.
Peta Edebone (Vic) – Player
Peta Edebone is known for her courage, dedication and commitment to the pursuit of success. She began her representative career when she was chosen for the Victorian U16 Team in 1984 and played for three years in the junior ranks. Peta represented the Victorian Open Women’s team for a total of 15 years, including captaining the team from 1994-2004. In 1993, Peta won the Sybil Turner Medal for Best Batter at the Australian Open Women's Fastpitch Championship and, in 1997 at the same event, won the Midge Nelson Medal for Most Valuable Player.
In 1992, Peta made her debut in the Australian Open Women's Team at the Challenger Cup in Beijing, as the 160th player to represent Australia. She played at three ISF World Championships, in 1994 in Canada (bronze), in 1998 in Japan (silver) and in 2002 in Canada (fifth). Peta also played in three Olympic Games – 1996 in Atlanta (bronze), 2000 in Sydney (bronze) and 2004 in Athens (silver). She was highly regarded as one of the world’s leading batters and defensive players in the positions of 1st base and outfield. At the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Peta equalled the then Olympic Record of four home runs. From 1998-2000 she was Vice Captain of the Australian Open Women’s Team and in January 2001, was given the honour of captaining the Australian Open Women's Team, a position she held until her retirement. Peta retired having played a total of 328 international matches for the Australian Open Women's Team, at the time making her the second most capped Australian player ever behind Sally McCreedy (356 caps). In 2008, Peta was inducted into the Softball Australia Hall of Fame.
Softball Victoria Chair, Jenny Holliday, also an ISF Hall of Fame inductee, recalls:
As a teammate and Captain, Peta inspired and led through her actions: her determination and focus was evident on her face; her skills brilliant; her ability to win games off her own bat a reminder to all that she would never give up until the last out is called.
Peta is one of those athletes you would drive across town to watch just because of the way she moved. She had that champion quality; to make the hard things look effortless. Whether on or off the field, Peta achieved things because nobody told her they were impossible. Her legacy to the game is a raft of young players wanting to emulate Peta Edebone; ready to take on anything the world has to throw at them.
Receiving world Softball’s highest honour – induction into the ISF Hall of Fame is fitting recognition of Peta’s many accomplishments across an incredible career with the Aussie Spirit and reflects her status as one of Australian Softball’s greatest. Congratulations Pete!
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