Australia tops Guam, New Zealand to win Oceania Youth Championship and qualify for WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup 2017
Host Australia went undefeated against Guam and New Zealand to capture the U-18 Oceania Baseball Championship today at the Blacktown International Sportspark.
As the Oceania champion, Australia will represent the continent and compete For the Title of World Champion at the WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup® 2017 in Thunder Bay, Canada, this September.
New Zealand earned 2nd Place and Guam took 3rd Place in the continental championship, which opened on Wednesday, 18 January.
The Australian U-18 National Team defeated both Guam and New Zealand twice, including a 6-0 win over New Zealand today, to finish the opening round undefeated and automatically be declared the winner. New Zealand and Guam split their two head-to-head matches.
The success in Sydney follows Australia’s gold medal at the U-12 Oceania Baseball Championship in Hagatna, Guam, last Sunday.
Australian Baseball to move into world’s Top 10
When the next WBSC Baseball World Rankings are released, current No. 11 Australia will overtake Italy and move into the world’s Top 10.
“It’s a great achievement for us to climb to 10th in the world,” said Baseball Australia’s High Performance Manager, Glenn Williams. “We’ve had a plan all along to attend international events with ranking points, and it’s great to have success leading up to such an important international tournament cycle.”
New Zealand, currently No. 27, is also set for a bump in the rankings, while Guam is set to make the nation’s 2017 debut in the world rankings.
Road to U-18 Baseball World Cup 2017
Eleven nations have secured their place in the elite U-18 world championship, with the 12th country — Africa’s representative — still to be determined:
Africa (1): TBD
Americas (5): Canada, Cuba, Mexico, Nicaragua, United States
Asia (3): Chinese Taipei, Japan, Korea
Europe (2): Italy, Netherlands
Oceania (1): Australia
Tickets for the pinnacle international youth baseball competition may be purchased at http://www.thunderbay2017.com.