Redcliffe Padres’ Blake Barlow and Tom Chessell Named to Australia’s Talent-Rich U18 Baseball World Cup Squad

After a competitive selection process, two Redcliffe Padres have earned spots in the Australian national team for the upcoming U18 Baseball World Cup in Taiwan. Blake Barlow and Tom Chessell will represent their country on the big stage later this week

Intense camp leads to competitive selections

Australia 2023 U18 Baseball World Cup Squad
Photo Credit: Instagram/Team Australia

The Australian squad was finalised last week following an intensive training camp on the Gold Coast. The national selectors faced some tough decisions as they whittled the 50-man squad down to the final 20.

“This was tough,” said national player development manager Andrew Riddell. “Camp was super competitive and that didn’t make things easy for selectors.”

Blake Barlow and Tom Chessell prove their talent

Blake Barlow
Blake Barlow won the 2020-21 Padres Junior Player of the Year award. Photo Credit: Facebook/Redcliffe Leagues Padres Baseball Club

Redcliffe Padres pitcher/infielder Blake Barlow and infielder Tom Chessell were among the standouts to secure their places. Both will now join the team in Taiwan as they vie for a podium finish.

Barlow, Chessell and three other Padres – Beau Allsworth, Zane Overlack and Cooper Reed – were among 50 elite players vying for 20 roster spots during the gruelling eight-day camp on the Gold Coast.

Tom Chessell
Tom Chessell bagging multiple individual awards for the QLD Schoolboys tournament last March. Photo Credit: Facebook/Redcliffe Leagues Padres Baseball Club

According to Riddell, a number of players have stepped up their game and forced their way into consideration. “We had an initial list of 28 players named after January’s U18 National Championships, but some guys who weren’t on that list made the team.”

In the end, Redcliffe’s two representatives proved they belong among Australia’s best.

World stage awaits Redcliffe stars

Australia 2023 U18 Baseball World Cup Schedule
Photo Credit: Instagram/Team Australia

For Blake Barlow and Tom Chessell, this represents a tremendous opportunity on the international stage.  Now, under the guidance of coach Andy Kyle, they will be looking to showcase their skills against the world’s best.

The tournament kicks off on August 31 against hosts and recent tournament finalists Taiwan.

Puerto Rico, the Czech Republic and powerhouses Mexico and South Korea join Australia and Taiwan in Group A.

Published 28 August 2023