Little brother’s turn for national side

HOME RUNS: Finn (L) and Tyler (R), brothers who play softball and football.

Heathcote’s Finn Mounty will emulate his older brother Tyler when he plays for a national softball side in two weeks.

Tyler said having his brother play his first international in a development squad was the St Bede’s College student’s first steps towards the dream of playing together in the Black Sox.

“That’s definitely the dream. At the top level, playing together will definitely show just how much we’re made of softball and how much it runs through our blood,” Tyler said.

Tyler, 17, was first selected for a national side two years ago and this year played for the under-17 Emerging Sox in the July friendship series in Brisbane.

This year was Finn’s, 15, first call up to an international side. He was set to play for the under-15 Developing Sox in the Queensland state championships starting September 22.

While Tyler had been disappointed his team had not taken gold in the friendship series and placed third, Finn said the brothers had been discussing the lessons learned for Finn’s upcoming international debut.

“The Australian teams are aggressive batters. I think what will get us over the line will be our defence. Offence wins games, but defence wins titles,” Finn said.

Playing locally with the Richmond Keas Softball Club since they were five, Tyler said they had kept pushing themselves to see how far they could go.

“I enjoy every game. I always play like it’s my last,” Tyler said.

Often playing in the same teams, Finn said there was rivalry and banter between the boys which pushed them to play harder.

“We both try work harder than each other. There’s lots of support though, both playing infield we know each quite well. If we play a bad game, we talk about it afterwards,” Finn said.

Tyler said the Richmond Keas had taken a hit in numbers during the earthquake. While they were slowly regrowing, the boys said having a core of keen and talented players had kept the club competitive in the intervening years.

Former Black Sox pitcher Penese Iosefo returned to the club this season to grow the club’s young talent, supporting them to achieve at the highest level.

In the past three years the Richmond Keas had a number of players in international sides, including Nikora Wikiriwhi in the 2017 under-17 developing Black Sox and Tyler who had worn the black strip a few times.

Richmond Keas committee member Penny Cherry said there were some talented girls coming through the ranks too.