Over 350 softball players from 22 clubs throughout the country are competing at the National Interclub Men's Softball tournament at Rosedale Park this week.
Te Kāea caught up with one of the new clubs from South Auckland.
It's been a struggle to get here but the Redhill Rocketz are pumped and ready in their new strip.
Coach Carlaus Te Kawa say, “It's a big privilege even for us as we tend to miss these things. Through funding or support we've got a good base of players and young boys that we want to develop.”
Lawrence Naera says, “Carlaus and I sat down and looked at the Club nationals and made a six year plan that we're going to take these young boys to Nationals every single year."
The club is only five years old and this is their second appearance at the Nationals but coach Carlaus Te Kawa says it's a lifeline to many.
"We all live around Papakura and Manurewa and for the sport in general we saw a win not only for our region but for Softball NZ to help out with our smaller associations," says Te Kawa.
Two of the young guns of the team are already on the radar for the Junior Black Sox but it's their first time playing in this tournament amongst the best senior players in New Zealand.
Giovanni Timoti says, “I'm pretty nervous, there are quite a few legends playing out there today. It’s good to see their faces and I'm really looking forward to it."
Brodie Boyce says, “I grew up playing, born and raised playing softball. Dad loved it and made plenty of representative teams and I've just followed his path basically."
It was a baptism by fire for the young guys playing against defending champs the Ramblers.
While the result is important, the experience and exposure to selectors for the younger players is priceless.
Lawrence Naera says, “We've identified about 6 boys that we're going to help to push on for the next world series and the Junior Blacksox coach is playing at this tournament and coaching as well so it's their time to shine."