Canada’s Janet Leung steals second base during playoff action at the Softball Americas Olympic Qualifier tournament in South Surrey on August 31, 2019. Leung and her teammates have not been back to Softball City since, as the 2020 and now ‘21 Canada Cup tournaments have been cancelled. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck photo)

Canada’s Janet Leung steals second base during playoff action at the Softball Americas Olympic Qualifier tournament in South Surrey on August 31, 2019. Leung and her teammates have not been back to Softball City since, as the 2020 and now ‘21 Canada Cup tournaments have been cancelled. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck photo)

Canada Cup softball event cancelled for second straight year

Travel, health concerns cited as reasons for cancellation of popular Lower Mainland event

The Canada Cup International Softball Championship has been cancelled for a second consecutive year amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The cancellation of the long-running tournament – which is typically held in July at Softball City and other parks around South Surrey and sometimes Cloverdale – was announced Wednesday morning.

This year’s event was scheduled for July 2-11.

“The decision to cancel this year’s event is terribly disappointing, but there are simply too many health-related concerns and logistical issues to allow the event to take place,” said Canada Cup board chair Greg Timm. “The health and safety of players, their families, our volunteer base and the fans needs to come first and foremost.”

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Considering teams – both youth squads and national women’s teams – come to the tournament from across the world, ongoing border issues and Canada’s quarantine rules played a major role in this year’s cancellation. As well, Timm noted that “the suggestion by public health officials that no large-scale events (should) occur this summer” was a major factor in the decision.

Last year’s event was cancelled for many of the same reasons.

“We are especially disappointed for the young athletes who count on this event as a marquee showcase tournament that has led to hundreds of scholarships from academic institutions across North America,” Timm said.

The national teams that would have attended the Canada Cup – including the Canadian women’s team, which features a number of local players – are currently training in advance of the Summer Olympics in Tokyo, which is slated for a late-July start.

In normal Olympic or world championships years, many of those teams use the Canada Cup as a tune-up event, and head to the worlds or Olympics after the South Surrey tournament wraps.

Timm said organizers are now focused on planning for a 2022 Canada Cup “that will be better than ever.”



sports@peacearchnews.com

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