Australian fastpitch softballers Adam Folkard and Zenon Winters in Tasmania for the Tassie Fastpitch Classic tournament in Ulverstone

Rocking up chewing down a Subway, accompanied with a full kit of gear and wearing their caps perfectly, Adam Folkard and Zenon Winters certainly look the part.

But it’s all on the softball mound and behind home plate that the inseparable pair prove that look is more than just for show.

Folkard puts serious heat on his pitches and Winter is only too happy to feel one hit into his catcher’s mit.

This is to Australian softball what the Lillee-Marsh partnership was to cricket.

As Launceston Grammar’s top cricketers found out first hand in an impromptu game.

“I was actually a wicketkeeper as well,” Winter adds.

“I said to the boys today I played a lot of cricket.

“But they weren’t expecting it and was pretty tough for them being different.”

That’s why their game is dubbed fastpitch softball.

It’s Lillee-like for speed.

And just like the former Test great paceman, Folkard has felt the angst of the Kiwis.

That’s when back in 2010 the-then reigning world champions demanded to the International Softball Federation that the Aussie pitcher change an action that impacted the role of batters.

They did so only when he pitched a rare no-hitter to end New Zealand’s dominance.

“They called me for illegal pitching for just the style of the way I was pitching at the time,” Folkard says.

“A couple of quick changes and I was back where I was.

“It was a new technique for a while – it was a bit of a bummer to take the time out to train and practice hard.

“A bit of nightmare to just learning to do things a bit different in the rules, but they don’t really police it much.

“It was really just a fad.”

Both men debuted for Australia in 2004 and the combination been a part of fastpitch folklore.

“Ever since we have been playing in club and state teams, but never in the States,” Folkard says.

That’s where the game flourishes for big city teams.

It’s not quite Major League Baseball pay days, but it’s a handsome living.

“They’re on millions of dollars,” Winter first rebuffs.

“It’s basically, on paper, to cover all our living costs.

“Next week we go to Indonesia to play and that give us a bit of spending money.”

Winter points out that it costs more than $4000 out of their own pocket to play in tournaments for Australia. “We don’t like talking much about money,” Folkard adds.

Their focus on Friday for three days will be the second Tassie Fastpitch Classic tournament in Ulverstone.

For a change, Winter will turn out for the home side and Folkard will play for his hometown of Canberra.

“This time in Tassie, we’re up against each other like last year. Usually we’re on the same team, which is a lot more fun,” Folkard says.

READY: Folkard in action

READY: Folkard in action

ON THE MOUND: Two of the most recognisable softballers in the world, Adam Folkard and Zenon Winters, prepare for Tassie Fastpitch Classic on Friday. Picture: Scott Gelston

ON THE MOUND: Two of the most recognisable softballers in the world, Adam Folkard and Zenon Winters, prepare for Tassie Fastpitch Classic on Friday. Picture: Scott Gelston

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