The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) completed a visit to the United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA) Space Coast Complex in Viera, Florida, USA, to evaluate the home of the VIII WBSC Women’s Baseball World Cup® 2018 and co-sign the host contract agreement.

The Women’s Baseball World Cup 2018 will be staged from 22-31 August and will be the first world championship ever to be hosted by USSSA, which became a WBSC Associate Member in 2017.

The new USSSA Space Coast Complex, which includes a broadcast centre, is part of a US$ 30 million redevelopment/tourism project within Brevard County. The Space Coast Stadium previously served as the Spring Training home of three different Major League Baseball (MLB) teams.

“USSSA’s Space Coast Complex is a first-class facility and promises to be the home of the biggest-ever Women’s Baseball World Cup,” said WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari. “The Space Coast will be an incredible stage for the players, as well as the fans in the stands and spectators watching around the world.”

“It is an honor and privilege to host the Women’s Baseball World Cup 2018 in Viera,” said Space Coast Tourism Director Eric Garvey. “The eyes of the sporting world will be on our community as we welcome guests from around the world to Florida’s Space Coast.”

The previous Women’s Baseball World Cup in 2016, in Gijang, Korea, had a broadcast reach of approximately 100 million households and registered more than 6 million online views from 198 countries and territories.

“Hosting the WBSC Women’s Baseball World Cup is just a dream come true,” said USSSA Chairman, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer Don DeDonatis. “It is going to be the main event of the Summer. In the near future, we expect to host 45 to 50 weekend or week-long events a year at Space Coast Stadium complex.”

The WBSC and USSSA leaders also formally signed the hosting contract of the Women’s Baseball World Cup 2018.

Ten of 12 nations have qualified for the women’s baseball pinnacle event in Viera: Host USA, Canada Cuba and Venezuela from the Americas; Netherlands from Europe; Australia from Oceania; and Japan (five-time defending world champions), Korea, Chinese Taipei and Hong Kong from Asia. The two remaining berths will be decided at the inaugural Pan Am Women’s Baseball World Cup Qualifier, hosted by the Dominican Baseball Federation (FEDOBE) in Santo Domingo from 22-26 March.