Ilsa’s Journey to Blacktown – Part Two

Photo Credit: Softball Australia

Ilsa’s Journey to Blacktown – Part Two

Catch up on Part One here

Picked as the sole Victorian competing at Summerslam, Anstey couldn’t hold back her excitement on working with Riot Captain Chelsea Forkin, a player she’s been eager to play alongside for years.

“I’ve watched Chelsea a lot over the past two years, I remember her playing from many years back. She’s really level headed and has the ability to focus on her role and she just enjoys and loves the sport,” Anstey said.

“I’m looking forward to having her as our leader and getting to know a bit more about her. She’s a great player and great person and I’m looking forward to it.”

The Summerslam – Fully Loaded format offers a faster dynamic of play.

The exciting new format will feature three-innings games, a reduced distance to the home-run fence, shorter innings changeovers and runners starting on base in each innings.

Broadcast live on Fox Sports, the tournament exposes softball to the Australian audience, with the action packed games appealing to kids, which Anstey is thrilled to partake in.

“I think Summerslam is really exciting, I’ve always been intrigued in the way Australians watch cricket but find softball a slow sport. Watching how the Big Bash went and the success they had, I think Summerslam is really promising for us,” Anstey said.

“With such elite players playing in the competition who are hooked up to microphones, I think that gives kids an insight into the mindset of players on the pitch.

“It’s a great initiative, I’m really looking forward to it, and it’ll be great fun.”

Despite her belief in offering the fans rapid-fire, big-hitting softball – as a pitcher – Anstey can’t help but feel a little added pressure due to the shorter home run pitch.

“As a pitcher I’m a little bit nervous that the home run pitch as been brought in. I’d rather the pitch further out!” She laughs.

“Home runs are something of interest to fans watching, which makes it exciting, although it does put a bit of pressure on the pitchers.

“But it gives us a different focus, to concentrate more on spot pitching, and trying to move the ball around to get players off balance.

“A different mindset is an opportunity to have fun with it, and for the batters to get onto some! For the type of game we’re trying to create in it, I think it’ll be great.”

Anstey arrived in Blacktown on Wednesday for the Asia Pacific Championships, while Summerslam – Fully Loaded, also held in Blacktown will run from Monday February 4-6, broadcast live on Fox Sports from 5pm each night.

For more information on the rules, squads and tickets click the links below.

Rules: https://bit.ly/2HF1ChR

Squads: https://bit.ly/2TocMZI

Tickets: https://bit.ly/2UpfHBi

Keep up to date with all things Summerslam on Facebook here or Softball Australia’s website here.