Softball

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Softball to Open the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

8 Jun, 2021


The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) announced that softball will be the first of 339 Olympic events contested at the Tokyo 2020 Games, with the tournament scheduled to open on 21 July 2021, two days prior to the official Opening Ceremony.  

The date also marks the 25th anniversary of softball's Olympic debut at the Atlanta 1996 Games.

The athletes from the National Softball Teams of Australia and Japan will be the first to compete on the Tokyo 2020 Olympic stage, as the official schedule of the softball competition was unveiled on Friday.

The first six games of the softball competition will be held at Azuma Baseball Stadium in Fukushima, an area devastated by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake.

"The WBSC and the entire softball community are honoured to have been chosen to start the Games," said WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari. "This is a great opportunity to showcase how our sport and athletes can strengthen the Olympic Movement and its cause, and how our sport shares and promotes Olympic values.

"We will do everything we can to help shine the best light possible on Fukushima's transformation and how the Olympic Games are now more than ever a universal symbol of hope and solidarity for humanity."

On 21 July 2021, at 09:00 local time, Australia will face Japan, the host team and defending Olympic champion. Game 2 will see Italy compete against reigning world champions USA. The first day of competition will close with the Mexican National Softball Team making its historic Olympic debut against Canada.

The Tokyo 2020 Games will represent the fifth time softball has been featured at the Olympic Games (1996, 2000, 2004 and 2008).

The Tokyo 2020 softball tournament consists of a single round-robin opening round before the medal games are played on 27 July 2021, with the top two teams advancing to the gold medal game, while the third- and fourth-place finishers compete in the bronze medal game.

OLYMPIC SOFTBALL HISTORY - USA leads the all-time Olympic softball medal table, having captured three gold medals (Atlanta '96, Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004) and a silver (Beijing 2008), followed by Japan (gold in Beijing 2008, silver in Sydney, and bronze in Athens), Australia (silver in Athens, bronze in Atlanta, Sydney and Beijing) and China (silver in Atlanta). USA and Australia are the only nations to medal in every Olympic softball competition.

Rank

Nation

Gold

Silver

Bronze

Total

 1

 USA

 3

 2

 Japan

 1

 3

 3

 Australia

 -

 4

 4

 China

 -

 1

Headquartered in Pully, Switzerland -- adjacent to Lausanne, the Olympic Capital -- the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) is the world governing body for baseball and softball. WBSC has 211 National Federation and Associate Members in 138 countries and territories across Asia, Africa, Americas, Europe and Oceania, which represent a united baseball/softball sports movement that encompasses over 65 million athletes and attracts approximately 150 million fans to stadiums worldwide annually. 

The WBSC governs all international competitions involving official National Teams. The WBSC oversees the Premier12, the World Baseball Classic and Baseball World Cups (U-12, U-15, U-18, U-23 and Women's), and the Softball World Cups, (Men's, Women's, U-18 Men's, U-18 Women's and U-12 Mixed), and Baseball5 as well as Baseball, Softball and Baseball5 events at the Olympic Games.

For more information, visit www.wbsc.org, which is available six languages: English, French, Japanese, Korean, Spanish and Traditional Chinese.

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