Some nice news for the Deurne Spartans that came to me on New Year’s Eve. The Belgian Baseball and Softball Federation (KBBSF-FRBBS) has decided to lift the ban it imposed on the Spartans two years ago.
The Dutch Baseball Hangout heard the KBBSF-FRBBS announced this at a meeting of Division 1 clubs in November, 2022, but one of the club’s members told the news on New Year’s Eve.
In 2020, Deurne Spartans would represent Belgium in the CEB cup (now called Confederation Cup) as Belgian champion, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the club decided to pull back at the eleventh hour. The Belgian Baseball Federation was not amused and decided to ban the club from representing Belgium at international tournaments for two editions.
Without their Venezuelan import players, the club was only average at best, instead of the contender it once was. So for two seasons, the club did not come close to a place in the Belgian Championship series.
In 2022, the club reached the Belgian Series, and normally, this would have earned them a spot in the Federation Cup (third-tier European Championship baseball for club teams). Alas, with the ban still in place, this honour would go to another club.
But, the Belgian Federation decided to lift the ban. The reason behind this decision is unknown. Yours truly couldn’t reach the Belgian Federation for clarification.
For Deurne Spartans, this is great news. The club can now represent Belgium again at an international tournament. Where the 2023 Federation Cup will be played is still unknown, as the entries are still open. In the past two years, Belgium hosted the Federation Cup. In both years, the tournament was played in Brasschaat. In 2021, Olimpija Karolvac won the tournament, and Astros Valencia went the distance in 2022.