Home run hero goes back to his digger
Joel Evans smashed a home run to win a seventh world title for the Black Sox, but he’ll be back driving a digger next week.
The Black Sox arrived home yesterday with their trophy after winning the gold medal in Canada on Monday.
But unlike the America’s Cupwinning Team New Zealand yachties or the 2015 Rugby World Cup-conquering All Blacks, who enjoyed central city victory parades, Evans and his teammates are returning to their day jobs.
Mark Sorenson is possibly New Zealand’s only current world champion coach not fully employed in his sport. He is a regional manager for a recruitment company.
Captain Nathan Nukunuku took a break from the Black Sox last year because he had to focus on his growing work responsibilities at a leading building materials firm.
Evans, 26, told One News he was a digger operator in Wellington.
Asked when he would be back at work, he quipped: ‘‘Next week, now.’’
He said playing for the Black Sox ‘‘isn’t about the money’’. ‘‘It’s a family sport ... we just push each other and give it all our best.’’
Evans also told One News he realised his home run was heading for the fence as soon as the ball left his bat.
‘‘Yeah I knew straight away it was gone, it was awesome,’’ he said.
The Black Sox arrived at the airport - on the same flight as New Zealand’s under-21 world championship netballers - to a noisy welcome from softball supporters.