Taiwan shuts out Japan to clinch U12 Baseball World Cup title

Taipei, Taiwan won its second U12 Baseball World Cup title Sunday with a 40 shutout victory against Japan in the southern city of Tainan.

The longawaited title gave Taiwan, competing under the name Chinese Taipei, its first in eight years since it clinched a trophy in the biennial competition's inaugural edition in 2011. It made it to the finals in each of the first four tournaments.

Watched by a 7,000plus crowd at the Tainan AsiaPacific International Baseball Stadium, the victory had largely its starting pitcher, Chen KaiSheng to thank, who pitched five scoreless innings and hit a solo homerun at the top of the sixth.

Neither of the two teams were able to earn a run in the first two innings in Sunday's game.

Taiwan drew first blood in the third inning on a Japanese error and a timely hit by Jiang Tingyi with bases loaded, giving Taiwan an early 20 lead.

The home team added another run with a sacrifice fly by Yeh Hungjen the fourth inning to extend the lead to 30.

Chen added another safety run to extend the lead to 40 with a single homer at the sixth before reliever Lin Chengyu came from the bullpen at the bottom of the sixth to preserve the shutout.

Earlier Sunday, Cuba beat South Korea 21 to win third place in the event.

The U12 Baseball World Cup is for players under the age of 12 and is sanctioned by the World Baseball Softball Confederation. It is the most elite and highest level of competition in its age category.

Source: NGO