The five-nation 2016 PONY Baseball/Softball International Asia-Pacific Zone Championship was set on July 12 to 17 at the Ayala Alabang Golf and Country Club in Muntinlupa City.
Rodolfo Tingzon, the president of the Philippine Tot Baseball Foundation and the tournament director, said the weeklong competition would also serve as a qualifying tournament for the Pony League World Series slated August 4 to 7 in Washington, Pennsylvania, United States.
“It is going to be a tough game among defending champion Taiwan, Japan and Korea. We are hoping we can excel in that tournament since we’re considered as the dark horse here. It’s going to be exciting,” Tingzon told The Manila Times.
Indonesia, Philippines Team A (host) and Japan will be playing in Group A while Korea, Taiwan and Philippines Team B (guest) will compete in Group B. The games of Philippines Team B will not be tallied in the standings.
“In this international tournament, we are hoping to see where we are now,” said Tingzon, referring to the Philippine team’s capability. “We have to gauge our capability in Asia. But I’m pretty sure; our players will do their best there. We decided to form two teams because we have a lot of players.”
Indonesia will play against Philippines Team A at 8 a.m. on the opening day on Tuesday, to be followed by the opening ceremony at 10 a.m. The Taiwan vs Korea game follows at 11 a.m. while Japan will take on Philippines Team B at 1 p.m.
The 2016 PONY International Southeast Asian Champion award will be given to the winner of the game between the two highest-ranking Southeast Asia teams after the elimination.
The Southeast Asian Championship match between Philippines Team A and Indonesia was set July 15.
The tournament is supported by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in the Philippines.