Seven international stars will join Australia’s top talent at the 2022 Australian Women’s Baseball Showcase in Geelong next month.
Three players from Canada and Japan along with one from the US will be drafted onto the three Showcase rosters under an initiative supported by the World Baseball Softball Confederation and Baseball Canada, Baseball Federation of Japan and USA Baseball.
WBSC will also broadcast the games internationally under the partnership.
Baseball Australia chief executive Glenn Williams said it was an exciting opportunity to build on the 2021 showcase and further engage a global audience.
“The support of the WBSC and the federations in Canada, Japan and USA is great for the Australian Women’s Showcase,” he said.
“Not only will the event provide a platform for Australia’s best to show what they can do, adding some of the best female players in the world to event will add an exciting element.
“Our national Women’s team, the Emeralds, have been starved of international competition just like everyone else so to have the chance to play alongside and compete against star international players in their own backyard will be a great opportunity.
Three-time WBSC Women’s Baseball World Cup most valuable player Ayami Sato headlines the international roster additions.
Sato is a five-time World Cup winner and holds several records in the Japan Women’s Baseball League, including most career complete games and most strikeouts and complete games in a season.
Pitcher Mizuki Bando and Catcher Yukina Izumi will also join Showcase rosters.
Pitcher-outfielder Claire Eccles, pitcher-infielder Allison Schroder and infielder Alexane Fournier from Canada will also be added.
Experienced Team USA utility Anna Kimbrell rounds out the international talent headed to Geelong.
Adelaide Giants, Brisbane Bandits and Victoria Aces will square off in the seven- game showcase series from May 5-8.
Each team will play four opening round games with the top-two teams to face off in the May 8 grand final.
The showcase is supported by the Victorian Government through its Significant Sporting Events Program.
City of Greater Geelong is also supporting the event through its community events grants.
The showcase is another step towards the launch of a professional women’s baseball league in Australia.
Tax-deductible donations towards a women’s league can be made at aleagueofherown.com.au.