Dome ‘one factor’ for hosting WBC

BASEBALL::Taiwan is competing for the right to co-host the tournament with Japan against South Korea, which has mitigated its weather with its Gocheok Sky Dome

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff reporter

Tue, Apr 19, 2016 - Page 4

Not having the Taipei Dome is only one factor that might affect the nation’s bid to host the World Baseball Classic (WBC), the Chinese Taipei Baseball Association (CTBA) said, adding that the organizer would take various factors into consideration when deciding the venue for the tournament.

The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) could today announce the host country for the international baseball tournament next year. The competitions in Asia are scheduled to take place in two venues, with one of them being in Japan.

The other venue would be in Taiwan or South Korea.

In an interview with the Chinese-language Liberty Times (the Taipei Times’ sister newspaper), CTBA secretary-general Richard Lin (林宗成) said that South Korea has a better chance of winning the bid this time because it has raised its royalty for hosting the tournament and would host the games at the Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul.

Should Taiwan lose to South Korea this time, it would be in part because Taiwan does not have a venue like the Gocheok Sky Dome, he said in his interview with the Liberty Times.

However, Lin said that whether Taiwan has a baseball stadium like the Sky Dome is only one factor that the WSBC would consider when it decides the venue.

Other factors, including the country’s weather, its transportation system and its previous experience of hosting the tournament, would all be taken into consideration, Lin said.

Lin said that South Korea only became a viable host after it resolved the issue of its cold weather by building the Sky Dome.

Lin said Taiwan still has the advantage over South Korea, even though the association has never mentioned the Taipei Dome as a probable venue in its bid to host the international competition.

Lin said the association has proposed the games be held in Kaohsiung, which has fair weather.

Previously, the CTBA had proposed that the games be held in Taichung as well.

Apart from the weather, Lin said Taiwan has also raised its royalty for hosting the game.

Meanwhile, the baseball teams would not encounter problems in arranging accommodation, Lin said.

In addition to support for the tournament from the government and fans, Lin said that the association has accumulated extensive experience in hosting the game since 1999, which is a great advantage.