Taiwan defeats South Africa, books U-12 Baseball World Cup Super Round spot

Taipei, Aug. 1 (CNA) Taiwan scored 12 runs against South Africa on Monday evening, booking its berth in the Super Round at the WBSC U-12 Baseball World Cup in Tainan.

Taiwan, competing under the name “Chinese Taipei,” shut out South Africa 12-0 in five innings at Tainan’s Asia-Pacific International Baseball Stadium on Monday, its third win in the Opening Round, which secured qualification for the Super Round along with Mexico and Venezuela.

Taiwan, which won the last edition of the tournament in 2019, now holds a 3-1 record on the fourth day of the round-robin group stage. Venezuela is at the top of the standings with a 4-0 record, while Taiwan and Mexico are tied for second.

Taiwan will play Italy on Tuesday in their last game of the Opening Round, though the game will have no influence on the team’s advancement into the Super Round.

The game against South Africa was a friendly affair, with smiles, applause and dancing. However, that didn’t stop the defending world champions from getting busy right from the start, tallying a total of three runs at the top of the first.

After pocketing two more runs in both the second and third innings, sportsmanship was displayed on the field in the bottom of the third when Taiwan shortstop Yeh Shu-wei (葉書維) made a brilliant diving catch and hitter Sean Cupido applauded in appreciation.

Taiwan went on to add another four and three runs at the top of the fourth and fifth, respectively, to run out winners 12-0.

The defending champions tallied a total of 12 hits, with left fielder Yen Yu-hsiang (葉宇翔) going 3-for-3; while pitchers Ko Shao-chieh (柯邵捷) and Qiu Yun-zhou (邱允洲) combined to achieve a no-hitter.

Meanwhile, it was all about appreciation of the atmosphere and love of the sport for the South Africans, who played with plenty of hugs and smiles, while their catcher Kyle Griebenow interacted and danced with the crowd in between plays to the music pumped out over the speakers.

Now in its sixth edition, the 2022 WBSC U-12 Baseball World Cup includes 11 teams competing in two groups in the opening round, held July 29 to Aug. 3, before the top three teams in each group advance to the super round.

The remaining teams will compete in the placement round, which is played in the same period as the super round between Aug. 4-6.

The top two finishers in the super round will compete for the U-12 World title on Aug. 7, while the number three and four placed teams will play for the bronze medal on the same day.

Taiwan, Venezuela, Panama, Mexico, South Africa, and Italy are in Group A, while Japan, South Korea, the United States, Czech Republic, and Dominican Republic make up Group B.

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