Welcome

Welcome to the home of softball in Oxfordshire and the Oxford Softball League. Here you will find details of how to join a team, how to get in touch to find out about introductory training, as well as details of the season schedule and league table.

Softball has been played in Oxford since at least the early 1980s which led to the founding of the Oxfordshire Softball Association (OSA) in 1990. The Oxford Softball League plays most of its games on Tuesday and Thursday nights at Horspath Athletics and Sports Ground, Horspath Road, Oxford OX4 2RR.

Visit our Facebook page for regular announcements and details of events, training, and games.

Softball in Oxford

Currently, the Oxford Softball League is for mixed (co-ed) slowpitch softball; however, there are opportunities for ‘single sex’ tournaments and many of our players play fastpitch softball. Slowpitch softball is a social team sport, played by teams made up of 5 men and 5 women (more recently identified as ’12” ball hitters and 11″ ball hitters’ as we have non-binary and trans players in some teams). The ball is thrown (pitched) underarm and hit by the batter towards the fielders on the defensive team, who wear gloves on their non-throwing hands to catch the ball. Its closest comparable sport is baseball. Despite its name, the ball is hard, but larger than a baseball. Find out more on our About softball page.

 

Looking to play?

If you’re new to the sport or the league and would like to attend an introductory session, please head over to our new players page. We’d also love to hear from you if you’ve played before and are simply looking for a team.

The 2024 Softball Season

The league begins competitive games in late April 2024.  Important dates:

  • Rookie/Taster sessions Sundays 24th March and 7th (SBH session), 14th and 21st April (1-3pm, but please register)
  • League Grapefruit friendlies (open to all league players) Sundays 14th, 21st and 28th April
  • Captains meeting 8 pm 23rd April via Zoom
  • Game nights from Tuesday 30th April onwards: Tuesdays and Thursdays
  • Post season: Please sign up your team to the Oxford Inspires Tournament on 24 August 2024

Our League Games

From late April we begin competitive games.  Your team will play all other teams at least once. League games continue to be at Horspath Sports Ground each Tuesday and Thursday (see playing schedule for 2024 when it is updated).  Registration links are emailed around to captains.  If you’re new, and want to get in on the action, please register as a new player first.

training Sessions

Chris throwing a ball

New player taster sessions often take place in March, April and occasionally during the summer.

See dates above.

 

New Players Welcome!

Softball Team Cheer

New players are always welcome and we will be running occasional training sessions, leading up to a series of pre-season sessions throughout March, and possibly April, which offer an ideal opportunity to get involved. If you are interested in registering for such events, please let us know:

Register your interest here or go straight to the link advertised above.

These sessions are completely free of charge and all equipment is provided – all you have to do is turn up and give it a go!

No experience is necessary but if you have played before that’s an added bonus. There is no such thing as a ‘typical’ softball player – players in our league range in experience (from complete beginners to those that play at the highest national level), age (from 14 to 60+), fitness levels and nationality.

However, being a co-ed league makes us extremely sociable – you will find most players in the onsite bar after games, there are social events throughout the year and some even play weekend tournaments together.

So, whether you are…

Looking for a new sport to try
Looking for a way to meet new people
An experienced player looking to join the league
A player who hasn’t played for a while and wants to return to softball

…Oxford Softball is the place for you!

2024 NEWS

General

Mandatory/recommended equipment for players under 18 years of age

See BSF rules for 2024, partly reproduced here as a summary:

  • Players under the age of 18 shall wear a helmet with a built-in faceguard when batting and baserunning in slowpitch as well as in fastpitch softball. Also, in accordance with WBSC rules, all players under 18 who are coaching, umpiring or acting as batboys or batgirls shall wear a helmet with a faceguard when on the field.
  • Young players shall wear a gum shield if playing in any position in the infield in either fastpitch or slowpitch.
  • Young players must wear a catcher’s mask or some form of faceguard if playing at the positions of pitcher, catcher, first base, or third base in both slowpitch and fastpitch softball. [*]
  • The above equipment requirements can only be waived on the basis of an express written request from a player’s parent or guardian based on medical considerations. Any other reasons given for a player not wearing the equipment will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
  • Young players shall wear appropriate sports footwear

We anticipate that teams should have appropriate helmets.  However, anyone wishing to purchase their own equipment (or equipment for their child) may find the recommendations in this BSF news article to be useful.

[*] In Oxford, for consistency, we expect faceguards to be worn by under-18 year old players in any infield position.

2023 highlights

Our ‘Oxford Inspires’ Tournament 2023

This was held on 26 August 2023 and was aimed at recreational-level teams.  It was masterfully won by the Milton Keynes Diamonds.  The Oxford Tigers were the winners of the plate competition.  Full details on our Oxford Inspires Tournament page.