02/11/2019 - 17/11/2019

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II Premier12 2019 - Official Payoff

WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari, NPB Commissioner Atsushi Saito agree: "More international baseball"

18/11/2019

The second WBSC Premier12 confirmed the success of the innovative formula. The Premier12 slogan is the Global Baseball Battle and it applies not only to the wide range of teams who participated in the two-week tournament but also the qualification process where a team's ranking includes all age categories - U12, U15, U18, U23 and senior.

"The format based on our ranking works. The position in the ranking helps define the real strength of a baseball programme, since also youth events guarantee points," commented WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari after the championship game. "The Premier12 helps the internationalization and the globalization of baseball, this is a fact," added Fraccari. "The game needs to be global."

NPB Commissioner Atsushi Saito is also an advocate of international baseball. "We discussed together with WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari how to make baseball even more global. I think the globalization of soccer needs to be our benchmark. I really appreciate the way international soccer gets fans and players excited."

"We as the NPB are very much in favor of the globalization of baseball," added Saito. "I think it is a way to attract more people to baseball and fight back the growth of other sports. Soccer, rugby and table tennis recently enjoyed serious growth here in Japan. We are seriously competing with them for the attention of fans."

Saito, who was named NPB Commissioner two years ago, is an avid baseball fan. "We enjoyed very exciting games during the Premier12. All the participants did an excellent job and the fans enjoyed it very much. Global baseball is a lot of fun. The level of the teams was very high. Japan enjoyed the tournament the most, of course. I want to congratulate every team. They were able to create a lot of excitement."

Riccardo Fraccari congratulated the new WBSC Premier12 champions via his Twitter account



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