MARCUS BEVERIDGE, principal of Queen City Law, played short stop and second base for the 3 Rings Softball Team, which won the Gold Medal at the South Island Masters Games in Nelson last month.

The Masters is a nine-day long annual sports event held alternately in the North and South Islands. In Nelson, there were about 3,000 attendees playing over 50 different sports including softball, soccer, tennis, netball, and even cribbage!

Beveridge’s softball team included a number of ex-Black Sox players and coach. The team pitcher, Marty Grant, has been New Zealand’s top pitcher for a decade or so, and is still chucking balls in at 120km per hour.

The Black Sox have been World Champs several times over the last 20 years, and are not chokers. Like the Rugby World Cup, the World Championships are held every four years. The current champions are Australia, who beat New Zealand 5-0 in the last World Championships held in Canada. Sadly, softball in New Zealand suffers from a pecuniary point of view, and touch rugby has made some inroads against the sport. Most of the guys who have won the World Championships were back driving their courier vans or suchlike the day after winning gold.

Beveridge started playing softball in Nelson at the age of five, played in many National Championships over the years, and was selected for a New Zealand National Training Squad.

At the recent Masters tournament, aside from playing infield and hitting a number of safe hits, Beveridge was also the sober driver for the weekend. The team van was pulled over by the police at Tahuna Beach on Saturday night. The team was in the middle of singing a number of Māori songs with guitars on board and the police officer thought there was a live band on the waka. This was after dancing some of the night away with 1,000 or so netballers and watching France defeat Wales at the home of Nick Smith (Minister for the Environment).

“Softball guys in NZ are the salt of the earth,” said Beveridge. “This sort of break from legal practice is good for the soul and helps keep it real.”

One of the other lawyers at Queen City Law, Bradley So, is currently in Macedonia representing New Zealand in kick-boxing. Marcus hopes that So, like the All Blacks, will bring home the bacon.

Read the full article on NZlawyer here