(Story by Marco Stoovelaar)
Groups and schedule announced for World Championship Men Softball
LAUSANNE (Switzerland) -
The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) on Wednesday (March 27) announced the groups and the schedule for this years WBSC Men's Softball World Championship.
The sixteenth World Championship will be held June 13-23 in at Svoboda Ballpark in Prague and at the Hippos Arena in Havlíčkův Brod in the Czech Republic.
It marks the first time that this global event will be organized in Europe.
In total, 16 National Teams (coming from all five continents) will participate and 72 games will be played.
Reigning World Champion New Zealand, which is ranked in first place on the WBSC-ranking, will play in Group A.
In that Group, New Zealand meets in alphabetical order Argentina (5th place), Botswana (13th), Cuba (24th), host Czech Republic (7th), Japan (3rd), México (9th) and the Philippines (17th).
Australia (ranked 4th), which won Silver two years ago, plays in Group B and meets Canada (2nd), Denmark (11th), Netherlands (19th), Singapore (22nd), South Africa (12th), USA (6th) and Venezuela (8th).
Two years ago, in Whitehorse (Canada), New Zealand captured its seventh title by winning 6-4 in the Final against Australia.
,,Having teams from every continent in each of the two groups is another manifestation of men’s softball’s global impact, and how WBSC softball competitions are embraced all around the world'', said WBSC Softball Division Chairman Tommy Velazquez in a press release.
,,Staging the first ever flagship men’s softball world championship in Europe is just another step in the WBSC strategy to expand softball across the planet, and strengthen the game as a true worldwide, massive sport, both in men and women’s branch.''
|1966||México City (México)||USA|
|1968||Oklahoma City (USA)||USA|
|1976||Lower Hutt (New Zealand)||USA|
|1984||Midland (USA)||New Zealand|
|1996||Midland (USA)||New Zealand|
|2000||East London (South Africa)||New Zealand|
|2004||Christchurch (New Zealand)||New Zealand|
|2013||Auckland (New Zealand)||New Zealand|
|2017||Whitehorse (Canada)||New Zealand|
On June 13, the first day of competition, only one game is scheduled.
At 6 PM, the World Championship will be officially opened.
After the Opening Ceremony, World Champion New Zealand then will play the first game against host Czech Republic, starting at 7:30 PM.
The Opening Round ends on June 20.
In the Opening Round, four games will be played daily on two different sites.
From June 21 on, the top four teams of each Group continue in the Play-Off Round, which will be a single-elimination bracket.
The remaining eight teams will play placement games for the positions nine through sixteen.
The next day, the placement games for fifth to eighth place will be played, followed by the two Semi-Finals.
On Sunday, June 23, the four remaining games will be played at Svoboda Ballpark in Prague.
The day begins with the games that will determine positions five through eight.
At 4:30 PM, the Bronze Medal Game will be played.
Thereafter, the Final follows, starting at 7:30 PM.
Coming weekend, the Netherlands Men Softball Team participates in the annual Keistad Tournament in Amersfoort.
Complete Schedule Keistad Tournament
Complete Schedule World Championship