The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Premier12® 2019 will allocate two spots for baseball’s historic Olympic return at the Tokyo 2020 Games, making the major global baseball event next year two tournaments in one.
The world’s 12 best-ranked baseball nations will compete in the Premier12, which will be staged across 32 games and four countries from 2-17 November.
The top team in the final standing from the Asia/Oceania territory (not including automatically qualified Samurai Japan) and the top finisher from the Americas will qualify for the six-team Olympic Baseball event at the Tokyo 2020 Games.
With No. 1 Japan already entered into the Olympic Games on home soil, current No. 3 Korea — the defending 2008 Olympic Baseball Gold Medallists and 2015 Premier12 Champions — No. 4 Chinese Taipei and No. 7 Australia will battle for a ticket to Tokyo 2020.
Seven of the twelve Premier12 teams are from the American continent, including the current No. 2 USA, No. 5 Cuba, No. 6 Mexico, No. 9 Venezuela, No. 10 Canada, No. 11 Puerto Rico and No. 12 Dominican Republic. Football (soccer) made the “Group of Death” famous, but baseball may have to invent a new phrase — the “Continent of Death” — to describe the fight that will take place for this one ticket to the Olympic Games in 2020.
WBSC will divide the 12 competing National Teams into three groups (3×4), with squads going to either Chinese Taipei, Korea or Mexico to start the global tournament.
The Super Round and Finals will be held from 11-17 November at Japan’s Chiba Marine Stadium and the Tokyo Dome.