Monday, April 15, 2013

World Baseball and Softball Authorities Combine

World Baseball Softball Confederation
World Baseball and Softball authorities Combine - Sports Jagat
World baseball and softball authorities announced on Sunday they would join as part of a campaign to get both sports back at the Olympic Games in 2020.

The newly created World Baseball Softball Confederation (WSBC) will lobby for the sports' inclusion at the International Olympic Committee's May session in St. Petersburg, with the decision to be taken in Buenos Aires in September.

Baseball and softball were dropped from the Olympics after the 2008 Beijing Games, and are competing against climbing, karate, roller sports, squash, wakeboarding, wrestling and wushu for what could be one spot in 2020.

"This is a remarkable day. We have brought a new level of worldwide unity and determination to our quest to return to the Games," said Riccardo Fraccari, president of International Baseball Federation and co-president of the WSBC.

Talking to reporters in Tokyo where the agreement was signed, Fraccari said that the 65 million people currently playing baseball and softball around the world now have a single federation to rally behind.

"We are on a great journey to return our global sport to the Olympic stage. We've been listening and learning from the Olympic family and the IOC to understand what it takes to be included as a sport at the Olympic Games.

"We have reached a milestone in our journey to put baseball and softball back in the Olympic Games, and today I am proud to declare that the full membership of the IBF voted to ratify the new Constitution of the World Baseball Softball Confederation," he added.

Under the agreement, Don Porter, president of International Softball Federation, becomes the WSBC's other co-president.

Fraccari also announced a new international baseball competition called "Premium 12" to be played among the top 12 teams in the world annually with Japan as the tournament's host.

Premium 12 will not supplant the World Baseball Classic, played every four years and considered international baseball's top competition.

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