The local juniors who have been selected for the Queensland Under 16 and Under 18 National Baseball tournament are (back row, from left) Damon Mitchell, Ethan Elliott, Seth McClelland, Josh Healy, (front, from left) Kodey Wilford and Oakley Wilford.
The local juniors who have been selected for the Queensland Under 16 and Under 18 National Baseball tournament are (back row, from left) Damon Mitchell, Ethan Elliott, Seth McClelland, Josh Healy, (front, from left) Kodey Wilford and Oakley Wilford. contributed

FNC juniors in national titles

FOUR Far North Coast baseballers will test their talents against some of the best in Australia at the Queensland Under 16 and Under 18 National Baseball tournament in Sydney.

Ethan Elliott, Oakley McMahon and Kodey Wilford will don the maroon uniform in the under 18s while Seth McClelland will take the field in the under 16s.

The 10-day event starts tomorrow and will culminate on January 15 when the best teams contest the medal rounds.

While Josh Healy did not make the final cut for the Queensland Under 16 team he was picked up by Australian Capital Territory and it will be mate against mate when they clash.

It has been a long road to get to the national titles for both players and parents starting with the Queensland state titles in September.

A squad of 30 was selected to take part in training for up to six weeks. This involved travelling to ballparks in South East Queensland two times a week, arriving home many times after 2am.

From this squad the final team was selected which continued with the training regime until finally taking the field tomorrow.

Both the Queensland under 16s and under 18s have also taken part in a number of games against Japanese teams in a Friendship Series in a lead up to the national tournament.

The boys will come up against some highly talented opposition, especially in the under 18 age group where seven of the players from other state teams already take part in the Australian Baseball League (National Senior Competition).

Two Far North Coast officials, Scott McClelland and Aiden Hanlan, will take part in the tournament.

The Queenslanders will be hoping to topple last year's champions, South Australia, in the under 16s, while in the under 18s NSW Country took the title in 2016.



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