Tue, Nov 21, 2006 - Page 1 News List

Taiwan to host 2007 World Cup baseball

DPA , TAIPEI

Taiwan will host the 37th World Cup baseball games next year, the Central News Agency said yesterday, quoting Tom Peng (彭誠浩), acting president of the International Baseball Federation (IBAF).

Peng made the announcement on Sunday night during the closing ceremony of the 16th Intercontinental Cup baseball tournament at the Intercontinental Stadium in Taichung.

Cuba defended its title by beating the Netherlands 6-3 in the championship game of the eight-team tournament.

Taiwan took third place by shutting out Japan 4-0.

Peng said that Taichung's success in hosting the Intercontinental Cup and Taichung Mayor Jason Hu's (胡志強) strong bid to host the World Cup had led the IBAF to decide that the 37th World Cup tournament next November should be held in Taichung.

"So we will meet here again next November," Peng told 15,000 spectators at Intercontinental Stadium, which was built for the 16th Intercontinental Cup tournament.

Peng is president of the Chinese-Taipei Baseball Association.

The World Cup baseball tournament, called the Baseball World Cup (BWC) by IBAF, was first held in Britain in 1938, drawing only two teams.

Over the years, the BWC has developed into the biggest baseball tournament in the world. The 36th BWC in 2005 attracted 18 teams.

Cuba has dominated the BWC, winning 25 of 36 tournaments including the last nine events.

Taiwan hosted the BWC in 2001.

However, the BWC is now being challenged by the World Baseball Classic, which was launched last March by US-based Major League Baseball to raise the international profile of professional baseball. The Classic will be held every four years.

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