ISLAMABAD, Pakistan – Pakistan recently wrapped up the 12th West Asia Baseball Cup with a perfect record and a title. It was Pakistan’s third straight title winning both the 10th and 11th edition of the biannual tournament.
Iran finished with the silver medal losing only to tournament champion Pakistan. Unranked India wound up with the bronze medal after defeating Iraq 20-0.
12th West Asia Baseball Cup Schedule:
Monday February 23rd Pakistan 20, Iraq 0
Tuesday February 24th Iran 15, India 0
Wednesday February 25th
India vs. Iraq – postponed due to rain
Thursday February 26th India 20, Iraq 0 Pakistan 12, Iran 0
Friday February 27th Iran 18, Iraq 4 Pakistan 11, India 0
12th West Asia Baseball Cup Standings:
1. Pakistan 3-0
1. Iran 2-1
3. India 1-2
3. Iraq 0-3
John Fitzgerald over at BaseballUnited.net is at it again. In the audio below he sits down to talk with Syed Khawar Shah who is the Secretary General of the Pakistan Baseball Federation and also the Executive Director of the West Asia Baseball Federation.
John and Syed talk about baseball in Pakistan who is set to host the West Asia Baseball Cup opening up today. Syed mentions how many players play the sport in Pakistan and it might surprise you.
The last part of the audio, John talks once again to Toma Irokawa, the manager of the Iran National Team. He will be taking his club to Pakistan to compete in the West Asia Baseball Cup.
It is a short but interesting look inside baseball in countries we normally do not talk about. So give it a listen.
A little over a month ago we wrote about Toma Irokawa taking over the reigns of the Iran National Baseball Team and a couple of days ago John Fitzgerald from Baseball United was able to get Irokawa on the phone for a short interview.
In the interview Irokawa talks about baseball in Iran, how he communicates with the players, and even mentions how many baseball fields there are in Iran (it was more than I expected although not many). He also touches on the youth of the country and a little bit about the West Asia Baseball Cup.
It is only six and a half minutes but well worth the listen.
In 2009, Toma Irokawa ventured from Japan across the Pacific to the US in search of a chance to play in the major leagues. He played for an independent team and ventured into Mexico and Puerto Rico to play as well. However, he hung up his spikes in 2013 and headed back to Japan.
After leading a team of Japanese little leaguers to a tournament in Puerto Rico, Irokawa has been tapped as the new Iran National Baseball Team. He will also take over the Iran National Youth Baseball Team (18U). He has a lot of work to do but the 24-year old has a lot of enthusiasm and looks forward to moving the program forward.
The North Conference games of Iran’s 2013 Baseball Club Championship Tournament kicked off last month in Mashhad with Qom Sports Association winning all 3 of its games and sitting at the top of North Conference standings.
Qom accomplished this by defeating last year’s North Conference winner, Tehran Azarakhsh Club, in a thriller of a game, 9-7. Other North Conference teams include Khorasan Sports Association and Fooladshahr of Semnan.
These 4 teams will square off again in September in Tehran to determine the two teams that will advance to the playoffs to face the top teams from the South Conference. The South Conference games which will also start in September will feature Isfahan Power pipe, Bushehr Sports Association, Adineh Kariman of Kerman and host Arak Sports Association.
Top players from these tournaments will be invited to join Iran’s national team when they travel to Pakistan to participate in the Asian Baseball Cup (Southwest) in December.
Iran’s national Baseball B team traveled to Georgia for 3 friendly games against Georgian national team this month. Although, Iran lost all 3 games to the stronger Georgian side, it was a great experience for Iran team which is preparing for the Southwest Asian games in Pakistan in December.