KARMA CHIMI | Thimphu
The RICB Under-18 men’s Bhutan Amateur Baseball League (BABL) is underway in the capital. The opening match saw Thimphu Baseball Club (TBC) hammer Taba Lower Secondary School (TLSS) with a score of 23- 0.
On 27 August, the Bhutan Baseball and Softball Association (BBSA) celebrated its inaugural day with officials from its league sponsor, Royal Insurance Corporation of Bhutan (RICB).
The BBSA is the national governing body for baseball and softball in Bhutan and is a member of the Bhutan Olympic Committee and the World Baseball and Softball Confederation.
BBSA says that the league’s objective is to develop and prepare young players aged 18 and under for dzongkhag clubs and senior national teams whilst also promoting the health and social benefits of playing baseball and softball in Bhutan.
The BABL currently consists of one division, the Thimphu Amateur Baseball Division. The participating teams include TBC, TLSS, Loselling Middle Secondary School (LMSS), Druk School, Dechencholing Higher Secondary School, Royal Bodyguards, and Changangkha Middle Secondary School.
The league will consist of a regular season followed by the playoffs that will run for three months. All games will be played during weekends with an official game of 7 innings.
The top players in the RICB U-18 BABL will also compete in an all-star game on October 15.
BBSA is grateful to their sponsor and to LMSS for permitting them to use their school playing field.
BBSA added that for last one year since they started introducing baseball otherwise known as diamond sport in the country have gathered interest from both youths and adults towards the game.
Currently with support from Bhutan Football Federation (BFF), the association is provided assistance by allowing the use of mini futsal pitch in Changlimithang every Sunday. On the other hand, some of the schools have been allowing the association to use their ground facilities.
Their primary obstacles include having their own baseball and softball fields. With our own field, we can attract more kids and teenagers in the future and raise the game’s standards, said BBSA.
Another challenge for the association is the sport’s lack of popularity in the nation. Because baseball is more well-known outside, in North East Asia and Europe, than it is here, it is challenging to find the necessary equipment here.
For now, the baseball and softball association have been getting donation from some of the non-profit organizations in United States of America.
This is the second significant competition the BBSA has conducted to promote the sport in the country.