Pitcher finds the success zone

WHETHER he masters the bases or not, Jack Noble is truly at home on the softball diamond.

The Penrith Valley Sports Foundation Junior Sportstar of the Month for September has worn all the colours he can.

They include those of Glenmore Phantoms Softball Club, as well as those of the Penrith City Softball Association, NSW and Australia.

He aims to play at the world championships. The 15-year-old began the trek on perfect ground by earning a spot in the under-17 Australian boys softball squad earlier this year.

"It was a dream come true to be honest," Jack said.

"It meant a lot because I've played softball since I was six, so I suppose all the hard work paid off.

"But I've still got more to go."

Jack joined the squad in finishing fifth at the International Youth Cup at Blacktown International Sportspark in July and having made the prestigious squad three years younger than it's age cut-off, he said he was initially uncertain how he would fare.

"But when I was playing, I realised that I was good enough to be there," he said.

Not that the avid pitcher and short stop outfield had lacked success against older opponents.

He accompanied NSW in finishing first and winning the Arthur Allsopp Shield at the under-17 national championships in January.

"It was probably the best feeling I've ever felt in my life," Jack said.

The Glenmore Park resident earnt his first appearance in the Western Sydney Academy of Sport softball squad this year and last year was chosen for the All Star side to take on Japan at the International Youth Challenge.

Jack has also proven to be just as classy with a Sherrin in his hands.

A member of the Emu Plains/Glenmore Park Lions, he captained their under-14s to grand finalists and most recently their under-16s side while he was also selected into the Talent Player Program two years in a row, which led to him representing the Western Sydney Pioneers in the under-13s and the GWS Giants in the under-14s age group.

"It was amazing," Jack said of his Giants experience.

If he had to choose between softball and Aussie rules, Jack said the bat would most likely win over the footy ball. "Probably softball because I reckon I'm a bit better and I've got more chances to go around the world and stuff," he said.

"I still love AFL though."

■ Jack has won $400, courtesy of PVSF Junior Sportstar of the Month sponsor, the St Marys Leagues Club. Nominations: pvsf.org.au.

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