Hot trio on show
KEEP an eye out for young baseball guns Lachlan Allen, Jess Riley and Michael Gahan at Lismore's Timberjacks Friendship Series at Albert Park starting today.
That is because you might be watching future international or Major League stars in action.
In April, Allen was picked to represent Australia at under-14 level in the Cal Ripken Little League tournament in Maryland, US, next month.
Riley is fresh from a big campaign for Queensland under-17s in the annual Girls Friendship Series at Redland Rays Baseball Club in Brisbane where her team finished runner-up.
Riley will be the only girl in Far North Coast's under-16 team in the Timberjacks Series.
Gahan has enjoyed a stellar 2011. In April the Lismore youngster played a big role in the Queensland under-16s taking out the National Youth Championship in his home town.
His form at this tournament led to the pitcher being picked in a 44-person Major League Baseball Australian Academy Program on the Gold Coast from July 20 to August 13.
At this camp, Gahan will vie for the chance to represent Australia at the under-16 world championships from August 19 to 28 in Lagos de Moreno, Mexico.
First base player and hitter Riley is looking forward to testing herself against the boys alongside Gahan in FNC's under-16 team at the Friendship Series and she is not bothered by it.
“I enjoy playing with the boys and I don't get nervous by it,” the East Redbirds club player said.
“They don't make me feel like I'm the only girl on the team.
“Last year we won the Friendship Series and I think we're a good chance again this time.”
Pitcher Allen was coached by Gahan at national under-12 level before being picked for the Little League competition.
“Michael helped me with my pitching,” Allen said.
Allen is set to follow in Gahan's footsteps – Gahan represented Australia at the 2007 Cal Ripken tournament.
And Gahan said he trains almost every day to allow him to be picked in the Major League program.
The three-day Timberjacks Friendships Series will feature teams from Sydney, Brisbane and the Gold Coast in under-12s, 14s and 16s age divisions.
Games start at 8am and will finish under lights in the evenings.