HCAW tournament played at an unusual date

Today, HCAW (Honkbalclub Allen Weerbaar) from Bussum sent out a press release about their annual tournament. This tournament is normally played around the end of March or at the start of April, right before the start of the Dutch hoofdklasse season. But this year it will be played on the weekend of July 16 till July 19.

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Of course, the coronavirus is to blame for this. For a long time, it didn’t look like the tournament could take place, let alone the regular competition. But due to the loosening of some of the corona regulations, the Dutch hoofdklasse will start in two weeks.

The tournament, named In Memoriam Charles Urbanus Sr. tournament was inherited from the now-defunct club Amstel Tijgers from Amsterdam. After the 1988 season, when HCAW was demoted to the overgangsklasse (second-tier league) and Amstel Tijgers was about to dissolve as certain persons of the brass claimed the club wasn’t able to field a team that would be worthy to play in the Dutch hoofdklasse in 1989, a merger between the two clubs took place. In this way, HCAW got back its spot in the hoofdklasse and the merger club would be called HCAW-Tijgers. That name was abandoned after a couple of years.

This year’s tournament will host the top four of last year’s competition: L&D Amsterdam, Curaçao Neptunus, Meerlease Pioniers, and HCAW.

Compared to other seasons, there are some changes to this year’s edition. First of all, the tournament will start on Thursday instead of Friday. And instead of playing all games at the facility of HCAW, every team will play one game at its own facility. HCAW opted for this solution to give the other clubs a possibility to generate some income at their own clubs in hard times like these.  A laudable endeavor for sure.

This will mean that also HCAW will have to play a game on the road as it will face Meerlease Pioniers in Hoofddorp on Saturday afternoon. But all clubs will be present in Bussum on Sunday, to play the final two games of the tournament. A big advantage of the chosen format is that all games can be played in nine innings instead of the usual seven-inning format they normally use with this tournament. In a short period of preparation the clubs had this year, it is important to play as many innings as possible.

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