Olympic Rewind Series - 2000 Sydney: Watch Canada, New Zealand go to extras in softball Opening Round

Olympic Rewind Series - 2000 Sydney: Watch Canada, New Zealand go to extras in softball Opening Round
In softball’s second appearance in the Olympic Games, both nations met on Day 2 looking for their first win of the event.

On 18 September 2000, New Zealand and Canada faced off in what was Game 7 of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games softball competition, on a sunny afternoon at Blacktown International Sportpark. Canada was looking for their fourth win in Olympics history, while New Zealand was aiming to clinch their first-ever victory at the sport’s pinnacle event. The eight-team softball competition ran from 17-26 September Down Under.

Eight teams qualified for the Sydney 2000 Olympic softball tournament. Australia, the Olympic host nation, qualified automatically. Then the top four teams from the 1998 Women's Softball World Championships, excluding the Olympic host team qualified. These were Canada, China, Japan and the USA. The other three entrants were determined by qualification tournaments for Europe/Africa (Italy), Pan American Region (Cuba) and Asia/Oceania (New Zealand). Australia, Canada, China, Japan and USA made their second consecutive appearance in the Olympics, while Cuba, Italy and New Zealand were the newcomers at Sydney 2000.

The second day of the softball competition opened with Japan and USA winning their matches against China and Cuba, 3-1 and 3-0, respectively.

In the third game of the day, more than 5,000 people watched New Zealand pitcher Gina Weber battle Canadian left-hander Sandy Newsham in an electrifying pitching duel, as both starters went the distance for their teams.

Both teams lost their openers to their arch-rivals. New Zealand lost a 10-inning marathon against Australia, 3-2. Weber was charged with the loss in a 9.1-inning outing. Canada was no-hit by USA’s Lori Harrigan, who pitched the first solo no-hitter in Olympic softball history (Harrigan was an error away from perfection; she fumbled a grounder in the first inning, and then retired 20 consecutive Canadian batters).

New Zealand and Canada finished the Opening Round in sixth- and eighth-place, respectively, eliminated from medal contention.

Tomorrow's Olympic Rewind game, presented in collaboration with the Olympic Channel, will be the Sydney 2000 Gold Medal Game between USA and Japan.



  • 29/7 Barcelona 1992 - Opening Round: USA v Spain
  • 30/7 Barcelona 1992 - Gold Medal Game: Cuba v Chinese Taipei
  • 31/7 Atlanta 1996 - Opening Round: Italy v Korea
  • 01/8 Atlanta 1996 - Gold Medal Game: Cuba v Japan
  • 02/8 Sydney 2000 - Opening Round: Netherlands v Cuba
  • 03/8 Sydney 2000 - Gold Medal Game: Cuba v USA
  • 04/8 Athens 2004 - Semi Final: Australia v Japan