New Zealand names preliminary roster for 2022 WBSC Men’s Softball World Cup on home soil

The New Zealand Black Sox will start tuning-up for the WBSC Men’s Softball World Cup 2022 in Auckland.

The New Zealand National Men’s Softball Team are starting with a 35-man roster to begin a training camp at College Rifles in Auckland in January 2021, as part of the first phase of preparation for the WBSC Men’s Softball World Cup 2022 on home soil in Auckland.

The New Zealand National Team is coming off a disappointing fourth place at the WBSC Men’s Softball World Championship 2019, not standing on the podium for the first time in 39 years.

“It was our worst result, and it highlighted that we needed to start again, we needed to start again as a group and also from a men’s sports perspective,” said head coach Mark Sorenson during an interview in June.

Black Sox Team Manager Casey Eden said: “The camp will focus on establishing a strong understanding of the year ahead, and what players need to be working on. We will have fitness, mental skills and nutritional support on hand. No games at this stage but we hope to have a trial weekend late March/early April.”

New Zealand will host the top international softball event for the first time since 2013, when the Black Sox grabbed their sixth world championship trophy in history. The 2022 Softball World Cup will be the fourth time the world championship will be held in the country, preceded by Lower Hutt 1976, Christchurch 2004 and Auckland 2013. Each time the event was hosted in New Zealand, the Black Sox won it (in 1976 they shared the title with USA and Canada because the tournament was rained out).

New Zealand Black Sox Expanded National Team 35-Man Squad: Harry Valk, Kallan Compain, Zane Van Lieshout, Cole Evans, Pita Rona, Rhys Evans, Seth Gibson, Alfons Oveinikovas, Ben Enoka, Bradley Bennett, Campbell Enoka, Conor Peden, Maddix Rice, Rsychan Thompson, Thomas Enoka, Daniel Chapman, Liam Twigden, Taine Slaughter (Auckland), Jayden Stratford, Dante Makea-Matakatea, Jerome Raemaki, Zac Boyd, Alex Lundon, Damon Creasey, Reilly Makea, Josh Pettett, (Wellington), Joel Evans, Campbell Ngarimu (Hutt Valley), Bailey Hamilton, Callum Bishop, Jackson Watt, Ben Watts (Canterbury), Adam Woon (Hawkes Bay), Eru Drage (North Harbour), Ethan Johnston (USA).