Taiwan’s national baseball team yesterday departed for Japan to compete in the 2009 Asian Championship.
Taiwan will face Japan, South Korea and China in the competition, which will take place from July 31 to Aug. 4 in Sapporo.
Unlike in past international competitions, Taiwan’s national team will not include any players from its professional baseball league, but rather rely completely on amateurs.
Yeh Chih-hsien, manager of Taiwan’s national team, told reporters before his departure that he has asked his players to avoid costly errors and hit as well as they are could in trying to win the championship.
The players have also been told not to put too much pressure on themselves, in the face of China’s emergence as an increasingly strong opponent, Yeh said.
Taiwan suffered a surprise defeat by China in the Olympic Games in Beijing last year and was embarrassingly eliminated by China from the World Baseball Classic in March.
While many considered the Olympic loss a bit of a fluke, China’s team fundamentally outplayed Taiwan in the World Baseball Classic.
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