Team Italy Juveniles U12 manager Stefano Burato has every right to think his young and talented players will make a good impression in the WBSC U12 Baseball World Cup from July 26-August 4, 2019 in Tainan,Taiwan. Competing in Group B against three-time defending champion USA, 2017 bronze medalist Mexico, Korea, Australia, and Venezuela, Team Italy will have to place in the top three to advance to the Super Round from August 1-4. Super Round teams from Groups A and B will carry over their opening-round records against each other, with wins and/or losses against teams eliminated in the first round removed. The top two teams in the Super Round standings will compete in the championship final on August 4, while the third- and fourth-place teams will play for the bronze medal. The six remaining teams that do not qualify for the Super Round will compete for 7th-12th place in the tournament.
In order to qualify for the Chinese Taipei hosted international competition, the Team Italy U12 squad dominated the 2018 European Championship in Budapest, Hungary with class. By remaining undefeated in eight contests and outscoring their opponents 145-8 with five shutouts, including a 11-0 rout over the Czech Republic for the Euro Championship title on July 8, 2018, Team Italy's offensive onslaught and lights out pitching earned the Azzurrini entry into the 2019 U12 World Cup. The defending U12 Euro Champion captured the title in Utrecht, the Netherlands in 2017 with finesse by winning all five of their games after a seventeen-year absence in the competition and proved to doubters that the Team Italy Juveniles were not a one-year wonder.
U12 skipper Stefano Burato is traveling throughout Italy in search of the nation's finest athletes. He will host a series of try-outs in the following cities: San Martino Buon Albergo (Verona) on April 23, Modena on April 25, and Sal Baganza (Parma) on May 1. A final cut of the U12 roster will be determined following a four-day camp in Buttrio (Udine) from June 7-10, 2019. Team Italy U12 manager Stefano Burato will summon his selected players to Buttrio from June 28-29 before departing for the U12 European Championship, which takes place in Trebic, Czech Republic from July 1-7, 2019.
Prior to embarking on the overseas journey to Taiwan for the U12 World Cup, Team Italy and the Czech Republic will play a series of exhibition games in Buttrio from July 15-18, 2019. The Team Italy Juveniles U12 squad will be among the first to compete in the brand new Tainan Asia Pacific Stadium, a 130 million-dollar facility that will also host the following four U12 World Cups in 2021, 2023, 2025, and 2027. Forza #Italia! #LetsMakeItHappen
by Roberto Angotti