A SOFTBALL starlet from Wilmslow is showing Olympic potential – at the age of 10, writes Matt Addison.

Jessie Emery, who will start at Wilmslow High School in September, helped Team GB finish fifth at an international softball youth tournament in Italy last week.

The European Massimo Romeo Youth Trophy 2017 in Collecchio was for under 13s, making Jessie one of the youngest players selected.

Former Ashdean Primary School pupil Jessie could have been one of the most determined too.

That’s because the youngster has to go the extra mile to compete at the level she is currently showing in a sport which is similar to baseball but with a larger ball on a smaller field.

A lack of local softball clubs means Jessie cannot play as much as she might like, but that only made the Team GB opportunity all the more impressive.

Her mum Angie Thompson said: “In the summer, she can train once a week in a four-hour intense training session in Farnham Park in Slough, the only place in the UK outside of London.

“It’s a long haul every weekend but Jessie loves playing sport and this is a great outlet for her to do so.”

Jessie’s involvement in softball already goes back a number of years.

Angie, a softball coach aiming to allow more players to emerge by getting local schools involved with the sport to create a summer league, said: “I play the sport myself in the Manchester Softball League, so Jessie has been around people who play quite a lot.

“She has always been interested in racquet sports, such as lacrosse and rounders.”

Jessie has already earned a place at the BSUK Softball Academy between October and April, and will then continue training with Team GB next June.

With softball being reintroduced into the Olympic Games for at least the next three editions, Jessie is already on the right path to developing her chances of taking part.

If she should choose to continue into the adult section of the sport, there could be an opportunity to be selected for the Los Angeles games in 2028.

Angie added: “I’m sure there’s room in Wilmslow for another gold postbox!”

Team GB, competing under the name ‘the London Cubs’, played five games in Italy.

Wilmslow Guardian:

Two narrow losses in group matches against Czech opponents were followed by their first win against Moscow 7-4.

Team GB then lost 10-4 to Spain but ended the tournament on a high with a 5-0 success against Turkey.