In groove for national duty
ONE Mile softballer William "Bunter" Bailey coped well having to play four games in one day at the recent Australian championships in Sydney.
"By the third and fourth game, it was warm and it's all about stamina," said Bailey, 25.
"You have to push yourself through those times.
"You never know what happens with tournaments. One minute you're playing two hours a day, the next minute it rains and you play four to five games a day."
Bailey has returned to Ipswich determined to "steel" himself with better fitness as he chases his next Australian team honour.
Having already represented Australia, he's in line to serve his country at next year's World Softball Championships in New Zealand.
"I've got to drop some more weight and work on my batting," he said, wanting to get under 80kg.
"I've just got to stay focused.
"I know what to do. You have to work a lot harder and do a hell of a lot more fitness."
Bailey was chosen in the 30-man Aussie Steelers squad after helping the Queensland Patriots finish third at the national titles.
"I was pretty happy with fielding," the third baseman/outfielder said. "Overall I'd say I went pretty well."
At the latest national championships, Bailey represented the Queensland open side for the second time, having lined up for the Northern Territory last year.
The Patriots played 10 games at the John Reid Shield national tournament, winning their playoff for third.
Before Christmas, Bailey also contested the national Skins (club) championships in Canberra, making the Aussie Steelers team for the first time.
He was a part of Australia's comfortable tournament wins over Papua New Guinea and Samoa.
At his most recent national tournament (for state teams), Bailey batted at number two for Queensland.
While the right-hander is anxious to improve his batting, he showed signs of what he can deliver by hitting two home runs in Queensland's 10-0 semi-final win over Victoria.
In the lead-up to the world championships, Bailey can further his case at the club nationals in December after the annual Skins tournament. Both tournaments are in Canberra.
He's also preparing for the Club Classic in Brisbane over the Queen's Birthday long weekend.
Bailey was born in Ipswich before moving to Mackay and returning two and a half years ago.
He plays for the Victoria Point Sharks in the Redlands competition and for Warriors in Toowoomba fixtures.