Vincent Harris : Bachelor of Laws (LLB)
Softball & Badminton
Vincent has been playing softball and badminton since primary school. Eight years on and he’s made the NZ Junior Black Sox team and will head to the Junior World Championships this year, with the added honour of being the captain of the side. For badminton, Vincent is in the High Performance squad, the Waikato Wisden Cup (1st Division) team and the Waikato Open B team. He’s played in a number of regional, national and international competitions for both badminton and softball, and will this year play in the National Fastpitch Competition for softball – the highest regarded tournament at national level. Vincent has achieved a great deal in both sports, including being named the Waikato Premier Men’s Top Pitcher in 2012 and 2013, and the 2013 Waikato Secondary Sportsman of the Year.
- Won Southern Cross Challenge 2014 - 21/04/2014
- Won the Southern Cross Challenge, playing with the Junior Black Sox in Christchurch over the mid-semester recess. It is a national competition where we played against the Canterbury Red Sox (the regional men's team) in the final and beat them 5-4. The Canterbury Red Sox won the official national competition this year so it was a significant achievement for our u19 team and we showed improvements over the weekend so it was pleasing to see a result from it. It was special for me because I was named the captain of the team and felt a bit more pressure to perform well and do my part for the team.
- Silver - Junior World Series 2014 - 21/07/2014
- The Junior Blacksox came second in the Junior Softball World Series 2014, held in Yukon, Canada. I was the captain of the team and even though we didn't come out with the last win I was extremely proud of the achievement and of the team for how we represented our country.
- Runner up - National Fastpitch - 22/02/2015
- Playing for North Harbour, we came runner up at the top national competition for softball in NZ, playing against a number of Black Sox throughout the week it was a great experience
- Runner Up - North Island Champs/Wellington Open - 06/06/2015
- North Island Champs/Wellington Open on the 5th and 6th of June, it was a National event open to everyone in the North Island. Had a disappointing final performance, but was happy to have the opportunity to play in a final.
- U17 Local Derby Championship - 14/06/2015
- This was the first event that I've been a part of as a coach (in badminton). I was coaching the Waikato u17 team (both boys and girls) who played against other regional teams, beating Waitakere in the final. This was a good chance for me to practice coaching for the first time in a proper event and was good preparation for both myself and the players for Nationals, coming up later this month
- Runner Up - Waikato A Grade Championships - 21/06/2015
- I came second in both the Mixed doubles and Men's doubles events at the Waikato champs. Losing close games in the doubles was disappointing but my partner (Chris Steeghs) and I played quite well and just didn't come out on top. Lost in the Mixed double final against an experienced pair, but Felicity and I played quite well to get to the final.
I struggled in singles on the day, losing in the playoff game to get into the final
- U17 Team Nationals - bronze medallist - 14/07/2015
- I traveled down to Palmerston North to look after the Waikato u17 team, who were playing in the National Age Group Team competition, which is the highest level of team event in the country. The team came 3rd behind North Harbour and Auckland 1, who I would describe as being on a completely different level as any of the other teams competing. I was glad with the performances throughout the week. I played in this competition for many years when I was eligible and it was great to go back as a coach and learn a bit more about that side of the game. I also helped coach the U15 team who came third as well.
- Became qualified badminton coach - 09/08/2015
- Received my certificate from Badminton NZ for completing the Badminton NZ Badminton Coach Qualification
- A Grade Champion - Hamilton Club - 07/09/2015
- Had a few games against players in the same club as me, for Club Champs. Won the final 21-12 21-12
- A Grade Doubles - 14/09/2015
- Won the Mens Doubles event at my club championships. It was just a small comp and it was a good chance to get some extra game-time, but the quality was quite low
- Rambler u23 Colts Tournament - 19/09/2015
- Playing for the Roosters u23 team, which included the top North Harbour players in the age bracket, we came first equal - the final was rained off. This was a good pre-season tournament that gave me a chance to get back into softball for the season
- Named in Black Sox extended training squad - 28/12/2015
- At the end of last year I was named in the Black Sox extended training squad. This is a massively pleasing achievement to be named in the loop of the national team. This is motivating and eye-opening for me to realise that I could be reaching the highest level of softball in the world, and at an age earlier in my life than previously expected.
- 2014 Senior Recognition Award - 21/11/2014
- Got presented this award, which is basically for diligence and consistent effort and dedication towards the sport and specifically Waikato Badminton
- 2015 Senior Recognition Award - 26/11/2015
- Got presented this award, which is basically for diligence and consistent effort and dedication towards the sport and specifically Waikato Badminton. Winning this award for the second year in a row was nice to be recognised for my hard work, but it has become one of my goals to get the Player of the Year award one year.
- Waikato Badminton Men's singles champ - 15/06/2014
- Was pleased to win my first Men's title, as I played quite well throughout a long day of games... Also came runner-up in Mixed Doubles and Men's Doubles
- Silver at Counties Manukau Open - 14/05/2016
Although losing in the final to a player that I have never played before, and one with more experience, I was happy to have gotten so far, and to play the way that I did. It's been a tough season and I think it was a good point to kind of restart for the rest of the year
The competition was an open-aged naitonal level tournament, and there were some strong players there. I played some good matches leading up to the final and so was a good weekend to find out what I need to work on for my matches/tournaments coming up
- Runner-up, Waikato Champs - 30/06/2016
Lost in the final to Michael Fowke, who is a very good player. Despite the loss, I played reasonably well to get into the final 2, and had to beat strong player (TJ) in order to have a chance of making the final, so I'm happy with how I player up until the final.
- Waikato Badminton Coach of the Year 2017 - 13/11/2016
Won this award last year. It was nice to be recognised for the hours of work that I put into my coaching, on several different levels - having coaching individuals of different ages, going to schools, taking the waikato development squad, u17 team as well as helping out with the other representative training squads.
- BWF Level 1 Coaching qualification - 21/08/2016
After a few weekend-long courses/workshops and coaching completing the required work and exams I qualified for the BWF Level 1 coaching certificate, which is internationally recognised
- Winner 2016 RSL Cup (Div 3) - 03/09/2016
I was apart of the Waikato 2 team which won the North Island and NZ Division 3 team event. Although I was disappointed to not be chosen for the Waikato 1 team, playing the top ranking in each event provided some good matches for me, losing only 2 matches (of mixed doubles) throughout the season. We had a young team and were strong enough to create the opportunity to get the second Waikato team intto Division 2 this coming season
- Semi-finalist Nationals (MD) - 10/09/2016
Lost in the semi-finals of the Men's Doubles event at Nationals 2016. I was playing with Chris Steeghs, who was just coming out of an injury at the time, and we lost to the eventual runners-up. We definitely showed promise in winning th first game of the match 21-9, but couldnt keep our consistency for the following games, losing 17-21 in the third game.
I lost in the quarter-finals in the Men's Singles event to the eventual winner. I played well up until 15-15 in each game where I lost focus.
- Third place Nationals 2017 (Softball) - 19/02/2017
Lost to Auckland in the playoffs to make the final, 2-1. We were unlucky not to beat Auckland, whom had a few close calls go their way, unfortunately.
I had a good tournament personally, despite only being here for half a season due to being in Denmark until mid-December
- Second best batting average Nationals 2017 - 19/02/2017
I was close to winning the top batter award at the National Fastpitch Competition this year. I had an average of .368 which was second equal, behind the MVP of the tournament - NZ Black Sox Catcher Zane Van Lieshout.
I was reaosnably happy with how I played, considering my lack of preparation leading up to the tournament, and being surrounded by some of the best players in the world.
- Winner - invitational u23 series Australia - 08/07/2017
Travelled to Brisbane with the NZ u23 side, playing against the Austraian state teams, and winning all of our games (all except one by mercy-rule). I was happy with my performance over the week
- Winner - North Island Champs (Men's Singles) - 15/07/2017
Played in Counties Manukau, I won the Counties Manukau Open/North Island Champs 2017 in Men's Singles, a national-level tournament open to all of the top players in the country.
It was my first tournament out of injury and more of a build-up to Wisden cup which is the following week. I was happy with my tactical play, but did not feel satisfactorily fit, as my body was maybe pushed beyond what is necessary at the time of my recovery
- Black Sox training squad - 22/12/2017
Got selected into the national training squad again, attending a training camp in February 2018 from which a team will be named to play in a tournament in Prague in September 2018
- 2017/18 Auckland Premier team - 24/03/2018
This being the same concept as an all-star team, it was my second time being selected into the Auckland Softball premier side. The competition is said to be one of if not the best in the world, so to make this side is quite an achievement. The selction is based on my performance over the past season, and shows my consistency throughout the season.
- Badminton NZ National Championship Quarter-finalist - 26/03/2018
Winning my first two matches, I failed to keep up in the important times of my quarter final singles match against Samuel Ho from Auckland. I have a history of losing pretty badly to him so I knew that it would mentally be a tough match for me. I struggled with my quality of shots in the first game, but did well to keep up with him and tactically improve as well, but lost two points from 19-19, finishing the second game at 19-21.
- Semi Finalist - Counties Open 2018 - 12/07/2018
After a few weeks away from training I played in the Counties Open, and was quite a lot out of shape. Losing in the doubles semi final was an okay result, considering I played with a relatively new partner and the lack of personal preparation leading up to the event.
- Gosen Wellington Open Men's Singles Champion - 15/09/2018
Over the weekend of 14th 15th September I competed in and won the Wellington Open Men's singles title. This is a national open event. I usually go down to play in this event as it is one of the last tournaments in the Badminton NZ calendar. I have been runner-up a few years ago and couldnt play last year due to injury.
I didn't play my best over the weekend but played well tactically in the important parts of some matches - coming back from 14-20 down in the quarter-finaland getting through the competition without dropping a game.