Lucas Mullings pitch perfect
Timaru’s Lucas Mullings made a winning start to his international softball career in NSW recently.
Mullings and his teammates in the under-14 boys’ ISA New Zealand team took out the New South Wales Softball BOP Junior International Challenge Tournament in Sydney.
The 13-year-old returned to school on Wednesday with a sense of pride after donning the silver fern for the first time as the NZ team won the competition on points, after they drew with Japan Victory 2-all in the tournament final. ‘‘We only just won,’’ Mulling said. ‘‘We won on points and it was a great game.’’
The tournament was played March 24-26 at Blacktown International Sports Park in Sydney but the weeklong event also included morning and afternoon skills camps and training.
Mullings was selected for the team after representing Aorangi at the South Island Under-15 Tournament in Invercargill.
The NSW tournament experience was one he would never forget, he said.
‘‘It was one of the best times of my life,’’ Mullings said.
‘‘Everything about the tournament was awesome.’’
Before the tournament Mullings told Stuff he had been very nervous before leaving for Australia. He had expected to face some tough competition in the series, and wasn’t disappointed.
‘‘Some of the games were really hard and others not so much.’’
Mullings said he had learnt a lot throughout the intensive six-day trip.
‘‘The coaches were great and so was the support.’’
He said a highlight was seeing family members in the crowd watching the final.
‘‘My parents, my gran and my auntie came along to the tournament and that was really cool for them to get to see me play.’’
Lucas has been playing softball since he was five and got into the sport through his father.
Mullings said he enjoyed the game as it was a less traditional sport to play than perhaps cricket or tennis.
‘‘Catching is my strength in the game.’’
Lucas’ mother said the tournament had been a great experience for her son.
Mullings team won 7-2 over Metro Green, 3-2 over Japan Phenix, 3-1 over Metro Orange, 12-1 over Country Gold and a 2-all draw with Japan Victory.
The team is: Brendan KopuLowerson (Auckland), Cassidy Brown (Westen Bay of Plenty), TeRua Withers (Counties), Daniel Warman (North Harbour), Elijah Heta (North Harbour), Jacob Quintal (Waikato), Flint Giboney (Auckland), Josh Forrester (Otago), Connor Stanley (Canterbury), Brody Heydon (Southland), Arana Kelly (Otago), Lucas Mullings (South Canterbury), Fletcher Due (Canterbury), Hamish Long (Hawke’s Bay), Nikau Peipi (Marlborough).
Timaru softballer Lucas Mullings was part of the NZ team which won the New South Wales Softball BOP Junior International Challenge Tournament in Sydney.