The Baseball U-15 European Championship opens in Nettuno, Italy, on Tuesday 16 July. The top two finishers will qualify for the WBSC U-15 Baseball World Cup 2020.
The hosts Italy, the defending champions Germany, France and Russia will compete in pool A, while the defending champions Netherlands, Austria, Czech Republic and Slovakia will see action in group B.
After round robin play, the top two National Teams in each group will advance to the semifinals, while third and fourth place finishers will compete in the placement round.
The European Championship game is scheduled for Saturday, 20 July.
After finishing fifth in a disappointing 2017 edition, the hosts Italy invested relevant resources in the selection process.
“We scouted over 300 kids during a two-year process,” said National Team manager Roberto De Franceschi, a former Italian Baseball League start and a Nettuno native “We have no excuses, we need to make the final.”
Nettuno is the cradle of the modern development of baseball in Italy and is known as La Città del Baseball, the city of baseball.
Europe was represented by the Netherlands and Germany in the U-15 Baseball World Cup 2018. The Dutch finished eighth, going 2-3 in round robin play and finishing the consolation round with a 4-1 record. Germany went winless in round-robin play and defeated South Africa in the consolation round to finish eleventh.