The year ends, time to take stock as always, time to take stock, evaluate what has been done and think about what the new year will be, it seemed right to close this 2021 with the president of FIBS Andrea Marcon to do the point of the situation on our movement.
2021 has been a busy year for the national baseball and softball teams, both senior and youth, an overall judgment of this competitive season, and what if, as FIBS, you expected something more?
“In addition to the national teams, 2021 was a challenging year for Fibs from an organizational point of view. Four European championships at home, 50 nationals hosted, are considerable numbers in a period like the one we are experiencing. This challenge has certainly been won on all fronts. As far as sporting results are concerned, when it comes to Europe, it is clear that any result other than victory generates a sense of dissatisfaction. Having won the absolute of Softball and the Under 12 baseball certainly makes us proud, the second place of the two Under 18s and the third of the boys of Mike Piazza and the Under 23 are “bittersweet” because they leave us the sense of the incomplete . The Under 15 Baseball is the result that we like least because the widespread feeling was that of having a good team that had to finish much higher than 4th place. As for the Olympics, however, something more had to be done even if, it must be admitted, the teams that took home the medals seemed unattainable. Obviously, there remains the satisfaction of having hit a qualification that in 2017, after the European Championships in Bollate, seemed pure utopia. “
An initiative that is enjoying considerable participation is the “Play The Whole Baseball” what other initiatives in the pipeline for 2022, especially with a view to development and participation?
“Play the Whole has already brought significant data for several years and this idea has allowed us to be ahead of the times, now putting us in a position to satisfy the requests that arrive from many parts of Italy to start more inclusive school courses for our disciplines. Luana Girotto, who left us prematurely and to whom my affectionate greeting goes, had seen us along with this initiative. She and I, with Fabio Borselli and his collaborators, had the dream of re-proposing the finals of the Student Games by the end of 2020, Covid has slowed us down but I trust to be very close to this result.
The initiatives for 2022 will obviously be geared to being even more present in the school sector but also to participate as much as possible in mass events that allow the dissemination of our specialties. In 2021 some Regional Committee has undertaken projects in this sense and their experiences are sure to help the whole national territory. Certainly there is, and we will present the data at the Rimini Con7, that the work done all together, by the Federal Council to the Companies, by the Regional Committees to the Technical Bodies, has allowed the inversion of the trend on Baseball and Softball practitioners in Italy and this must be the mission of all of us for the future.
The choice of FIBS.TV, has it been found to be right and in step with the times, (there are many streaming platforms that broadcast sports), such as the broadcast of the European Baseball and Softball Championships broadcast by SKY, the goal and commitment of 2022?
“Improving and expanding the contents of the platform making it increasingly available to the companies which, it must be said, in many cases are working well for the promotion of Italian Baseball and Softball. We can still do a lot but certainly a lot has been done in recent years. Having platforms that are interested in our events and looking for us to broadcast them on their channels should be a source of pride for everyone. “
One of the various sore points of our movement is certainly the plant engineering (always present problem) there are several places that suffer from this lack of adequate structures, I quote from memory (Brescia, Cagliari, Taranto, Rome I apologize if I have forgotten someone nda ), what is the commitment of the FIBS to facilitate the creation of adequate baseball and softball fields?
“I’ll give you just one figure: 79. These are the municipal administrations that I have met in recent years to try to solve problems relating to plant engineering. I have traveled far and wide in Italy, in many cases things went well, in some very well, in others there was no willingness of the other party to solve the problem or we received promises which were then disregarded. But I do not give up and neither do the companies in the territories you mentioned in the question. In January I already have meetings on the agenda to continue the search for solutions and I hope to have positive news to share with the whole movement. “
Since March 2020 we have now been living with COVID, which has upset our activities, despite this situation the baseball / softball movement is resisting (positive balance in company affiliations and slightly increasing membership), moreover the FIBS has set up “refreshments” that have helped the companies in carrying out their business in these two seasons, what does the FIBS budget for 2022 foresee?
“The commitment of the Federation in the two-year period 2020-2021 was worth 4,000,000 euros in favor of the companies between direct and indirect aid (for example the non-payment of competition fees). Despite the pressures that came to us, especially when the balance was negative, to increase affiliate taxes, not only have we not pursued this choice but we have even reduced the impact of these expenses on the budgets of our affiliates.
These choices proved to be determined for the survival of our associative fabric and, as demonstrated by the last 400,000 euros divided, rewarding for the daily work in the various fields. We are and we will be attentive to future situations and we will act according to the needs that arisethey will exempt in the future but, right now, we need to work to get back to normal as much as possible. And in this sense we must read the decision to arrive with the Championships ready on December 18th, thus leaving time for everyone to organize themselves in the best possible time. “