London -- The British Softball Federation (BSF) has appointed Bobby Simpson as Head Coach of the Great Britain Women's Fastpitch Team on a part-time basis through the summer of 2003.

Major competitions for the GB national team during that time will be the TYBB Tournament in Holland and the Canada Cup (B Pool) in 2002, and then European Championships (A Pool) and the ISF Euro/Africa Olympic Qualifying Tournament in 2003.

Although the BSF does not have the funding to create a full-time position at this stage, the appointment of Bobby Simpson signals an intention to move up the world and European rankings and to build a serious challenge for World Championship and Olympic qualification.

Bobby Simpson has created and runs the Higher Ground Softball organisation in Tifton, Georgia, where elite Softball players from around the world have received specialist training. He has also programme development and management capacity with both ASA and ISF and was part of the three-person team (along with Craig Montvidas and Cindy Bristow) that the ISF appointed to create a national team programme in Greece in preparation for the Athens Olympics.

He is the author of numerous books and videos on Fastpitch coaching, and is one of the most highly-regarded instructors in the United States.

Bobby Simpson has been involved with British Softball Federation programmes since 1997, when he ran a coaching clinic in the UK. He hosted the GB Co-ed Slowpitch Team in Tifton for an 11-day training camp in 1998, following which the team won the inaugural European Co-ed Slowpitch Championship in 1998 and retained the title in 2000. He will now spend between five and 10 days each month in Britain through the summer of 2003.

BSF Chief Executive Officer Bob Fromer said, "We are extremely fortunate to have a coach of Bobby's calibre to take us through the important competition programme that the GB Women face next year at the Canada Cup and then in 2003."

In addition to coaching the GB Women's Team, Bobby will work with GB junior coaches and players and will help the BSF to create Fastpitch coaching materials.

Keep Your Coaching Pitch Perfect.

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