Long-suffering baseball fans in Kamloops will have to suffer a little longer.
The 2021 Kamloops International Baseball Tournament has been cancelled for the second consecutive year amid the pandemic.
“We looked at this decision from every possible angle, with hopes of giving Kamloops fans and our longtime sponsors something to look forward to,” tournament committee president Wayne Harper said in a KIBT press release.
“But in the end, there was no way to plan ahead without knowing when restrictions on gatherings would be lifted, not to mention the travel restrictions that currently prevent U.S. teams from travelling to Canada to compete. It was the difficult decision, but under these circumstances, we believe it was the right decision and the responsible decision.”
The Everett Merchants knocked off the Alaska Goldpanners 6-1 in the 2019 final to claim their second consecutive KIBT title.
Event coffers took a hit in 2019, with rain leading to delays, postponements and rescheduling throughout the weekend on McArthur Island.
Teams that had accepted invitations for the 2021 event, which was to be the 47th KIBT, have been advised of the cancellation.
“The teams couldn’t be more understanding,” Harper said. “They’ve been so good to us over the years and they feel the same frustration as we do, but they also know the decision was made for the right reasons.
"We hope we can welcome everyone to the ballpark in 2022, when we as a city are back on steady ground and the pandemic is over.”