The USA Softball Women’s National Team is set to train in Iwakuni, Japan, home of the Marine Corp Air Station Iwakuni, as the team prepares for the WBSC Women’s Softball World Championship 2018, to be held in Chiba, Japan, from 2-12 August.

The announcement was made yesterday by USA Softball. “We’re grateful to our hosts in Iwakuni for providing this much-needed opportunity for our Women’s National Team to train for the World Championship,” said USA Softball Executive Director, Craig Cress.  “The team will have the ability to acclimate to the time change and different climate, while also playing against Toyota Red Terriers, who will provide top-quality competition to put our Women’s National Team in the best-possible position to take on the world in Chiba, Japan.”

The World No. 1 team in the ranking will train at Kizuna Stadium from July 27 – August 1 and is slated to participate in a doubleheader exhibition against Toyota Red Terriers, a professional softball team in the Japan Softball League (JSL), on 31 July. Citizens of Iwakuni, service members and family at the Marine Corp Air Station will be allowed to attend open practices, which are slated for 28-29 July. Click here for more information.

Team USA will look to defend their Gold Medal finish at the 2016 World Championship in Surrey, B.C., Canada.  This also marks the first opportunity teams will have to qualify for the Olympic Games, as the top team in Chiba (besides Japan, who is qualified as host) will earn a berth in Tokyo 2020.

Early in the year USA Softball announced its 2018 Women’s National Team rosters and Coaching Staffs.