Baseball unites youth from around the city
Parents provide encouragement for young players
Every Saturday morning, a group of teenagers and their parents brave the cold weather to practise baseball in a remote field in Shek Kip Mei. To them, baseball is more than a sport.
They are members of the Central and Western Baseball Club (CWBC), and are encouraged by their parents to take part in the sport.
As the youngsters display their talents on the field, the adults play an active role on the sidelines, giving the players coaching tips and other forms of assistance.
CWBC comprises 15 players aged six to 11. They attend nine different schools and speak different languages, including English, Cantonese, Japanese and German. They may come from different backgrounds, but they have been brought together by their love for one thing - baseball.
Jo Jo Tam is the only girl in the team. Jo Jo, who is also the only player from a local school, said she is happy to be part of the squad.
'I don't find it odd to be the only girl,' she said.
Jo Jo's English is weaker compared to the other students, who attend international schools.
At the beginning, she was too shy to speak up, but now she does not have any problems communicating with her teammates.
In December, the club organised a fund-raising event called 'Bat for Charity'.
The organisers raised HK$26,813 from the activity. The money was donated to Changing Young Lives Foundation, a charity which helps children in Hong Kong and on the mainland.
The young baseball players asked for a donation for each hit they made. Brian Cochran, from Japanese International School, topped the number of hits with 25. 'I love baseball and I love hitting! I've been playing this game for two years,' he said.
'I found this team very special because I really like the atmosphere. No matter whether it is competition or practice, people from the club always cheer us on and I love the support we get.'
The Hong Kong Little League season runs from September until March.
Those interested in joining CWBC for the 2009/10 season can visit cwbaseball.org.hk