Japan U-23 Women’s Softball National Team claimed last weekend the Achille Challenge 2019 held in Evry-Courcouronnes, France, with the participation of the U-19 USA National Team and France National Team. The Fédération Française de Baseball et Softball (FBBS) inaugurated the first-ever fully illuminated softball field in the country to host this event.

The WBSC Softball Chairman, Tommy Velazquez, was present for the official inauguration of the tournament and the field. Velazquez said: “For me is a great honour to be here today in Evry-Courcouronnes, witnessing a truly historic moment for French and international softball: the inauguration of the first-ever illuminated softball field in France. This is a big milestone for the FBBS, I’m very happy for you. Congratulations!”.

The three-teams tournament was held from 21-23 June, and Japan clinched the title. The Asian team finished the double round robin first place, with a 3-1 record, tied with USA but with fewer runs against.

The Achilles Challenge is a bi-annual event held in France, to help the host National Team prepare for the European Championship. It is dedicated to Claude Achille who was instrumental in the development of Softball in France and the first Manager of the Women’s National Softball Team.

Achilles Challenge 2019 scores, stats and rosters.

Individuals awards:

  • MVP: Akari TANAI (Japan)
  • Best Pitcher: Miki NAKAMURA (Japan)
  • Best Batter: Urara FUJIMOTO (Japan)

Photo: Glenn Gervot