PULLY, Switzerland – Sports – The WBSC announced that Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada, has earned hosting rights for the Group A and Finals of the IX Women’s Baseball World Cup. The six-team Finals are scheduled for the summer of 2024. Baseball Canada and the Thunder Bay International Baseball Association (TBIBA) will run the Local Organising Committee.
“The WBSC is pleased and honoured to be back in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada, to stage a Baseball World Cup again in front of its passionate and loyal baseball community,” said WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari. “The announcement of Thunder Bay as host city of Group A and Finals of the Women’s Baseball World Cup represents the first step in the much-awaited return of women’s baseball to the global stage. I cannot wait to see the world’s best international women’s baseballers representing their countries in Canada next year.”
“Thunder Bay and its surrounding communities are very proud to welcome the Women’s Baseball World Cup,” said Thunder Bay Major, Ken Boshcoff. “We are immensely proud of our athletic history which boasts significant world championship winners in numerous sports. Our City is honoured to be chosen to host the Women’s World Cup and we will pack the stands as supporters and fans.”
The first stage of the IX Women’s Baseball World Cup will involve 12 National Teams competing in two groups. Thunder Bay will host Group A from 8 to 13 August 2023. The Group B venue and dates will be announced at a later date.
Seven teams have already qualified for the Group Stage:
- World No. 16 France won the European Championship on home soil in Montpellier in August 2022.
- No. 5 Venezuela, No. 7 Cuba, No. 9 Puerto Rico, and No. 12 Mexico were the top four finishers of the Americas Qualifier, played in August 2022 in Venezuela.
- No. 8 Australia qualified as the top-ranked nation in Oceania.
- No. 3 Canada earned a Wild Card.
The continent quota for the two groups is as follows:
- Americas (4)
- Asia (4)
- Europe (1)
- Oceania (1)
- Wild Cards (2)
The Asia Qualifier is scheduled for 2023, while the WBSC Executive Board will decide the second Wild Card.
The top two finishers of each group will advance to the Finals together with two Wild Cards.
Japan has won the last six editions of the Women’s Baseball World Cup while the United States are the only other Women’s Baseball World Champions. For more info click here.
Canada hosted the inaugural Women’s Baseball World Cup in 2004 and the fifth edition (2012) in Edmonton, Alberta. Japan (2008 in Matsuyama and 2014 in Miyazaki) is the only other country that has hosted the tournament twice.
Thunder Bay, which hosted the Friendship Series Canada-USA in late July and early August, is no stranger to international baseball since it hosted the WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup in 2010 and 2017. It is located at the end of the Great Lakes navigation route on the Canadian side of the border with the US and has 108,843 inhabitants, making it the most populous municipality in Northwestern Ontario.