22/03/2020 - 26/03/2020

@wbsc   **Event postponed until further notice.  

Hosted by:   USA

2020 Baseball Americas Qualifier - Official Payoff

Message from the WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari on the postponement of Tokyo 2020

Message from the WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari on the postponement of Tokyo 2020
24/03/2020
President Fraccari said baseball-softball’s anticipated Olympic comeback will have to wait a short while longer but when the ‘Tokyo 2020’ Games do get underway in 2021, they will become the symbol of our global recovery and solidarity, and be one of the greatest worldwide celebrations and most anticipated moments in the history of sport.

Dear WBSC Family,

The International Olympic Committee (IOC), together with the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee and Japan Prime Minister Abe Shinzo, made the difficult decision today to postpone the start of Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 until no later than the summer of 2021.

This decision, taken due to the rapid acceleration of the COVID-19 pandemic, will not have been taken lightly. But we find ourselves in the midst of a global and unprecedented public health crisis. The health and safety of athletes, officials, spectators and the international community must always remain our top priority.

Today, the WBSC Executive Board met online to discuss the latest developments and will continue meeting bi-weekly for briefings, leveraging the strength of the WBSC community in the process.

The WBSC stands in solidarity with the Olympic Movement and Japan during this challenging time, and will remain fully flexible about its own events, including Olympic qualifiers, to accommodate the rescheduling of the Tokyo 2020 Games. While the six teams have been decided for Olympic softball, this postponement also allows more time to complete a fair Olympic qualification process for baseball, providing an equal opportunity for the teams and their players.

On behalf of the WBSC, I would like to extend our deepest sympathies to the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee and the people of Japan. But we have no doubt that Japan, one of the greatest baseball-softball nations, has the resilience and grit to come back stronger and put on a memorable sporting spectacle in 2021.

The WBSC also stands in unison with governments and public health officials around the world who are working tirelessly to contain the spread of COVID-19. We applaud the international community’s response, which has already saved countless lives, and will continue to do so in the months ahead.

And we therefore continue to remind our global baseball-softball family to follow the guidelines set out by their respective governments, public health authorities and the World Health Organisation (WHO) on the appropriate protective measures to take.

We are certain that together, we will all overcome the COVID-19 pandemic. And when the ‘Tokyo 2020’ Games do get underway in 2021, they will become the symbol of our global recovery and solidarity, and be one of the greatest worldwide celebrations and most anticipated moments in the history of sport.

Baseball-softball’s anticipated Olympic comeback will have to wait a short while longer. But I have no doubt that when the Tokyo 2020 Games take place, our entire global family will rejoice as we make our long-awaited and spectacular return on the greatest sporting stage of all.  

Until then, keep yourselves and your loved ones safe and healthy.

Riccardo Fraccari
WBSC President