“Next time, I’ll win” Korean, Japanese, and Taiwanese children meet at Boeun T-ball tournament, forging friendships across borders

T-ball players from Geumdong Elementary School in Seoul competed against the Junichi Dragons T-ball team from Japan. Students from three countries, Korea, Japan, and Taiwan, enjoyed the competition and made good memories together.메이저놀이터

Geumdong Elementary School’s T-ball team, “Seoul Dreams,” won two games and lost one game in the International Exchange League qualifying league for the 2023 KBO Youth T-Ball Festival Elementary Sports Club T-Ball Competition at the KBO Baseball Center in Boeun-gun, Chungcheongbuk-do, on the 30th. In the final match, they played against the Aichi Prefectural Union Team (a T-ball team affiliated with Junichi) from Japan, but lost in a 6-7 final.

Even though they lost the match, Geumdongcho played just as well as the Aichi team. They played a thrilling game with steady defense and sharp hitting, which is hard to believe for elementary school players. After the game, the coaches of both teams praised their opponents for their outstanding performance and looked forward to the next match. The players also high-fived their opponents and shared their friendship after the hard-fought game.

Seoul’s Geumdong Elementary School and Japan’s Aichi Prefectural Union Team in action. /OSEN DB

Seoul’s Geumdong Elementary School and Japan’s Aichi Prefectural Union Team in action. /OSEN DB

Students from Seoul’s Geumdong Elementary School and Japan’s Aichi Prefectural Union Team share a high-five after the game. /OSEN DB

Seoul Dreams captain Cho Won-bin said, “I think the Japanese team is too good. The Japanese coach also told us that we played well today and that he would like to see us in Japan next time. We have been practicing hard, and we will work even harder in the future.”

“We played as a team,” said Yamada Shota of the Aichi Prefectural Union Team. We got a good result and everything seems to have gone well. The last time we played against Seoul Dreams, they gave us five points at the beginning and we were nervous because we only scored five points in our offense, but in the next defense, we caught the first bounced ball well and then we got a kill, so I think we were able to play well.”

“It was really fun to play today,” said Park Seung-bum from Seoul Dreams. The Japanese team was also really good, which made it even more fun,” he said. Lee Ju-won, who hit an inside-the-park home run, said, “At first, I was disappointed because I didn’t catch the ball well. But later on, I was so happy to hit a ground home run,” he laughed.

Choi Ji-woo, who said, “The Japanese players played so well, like they were in the third or fourth grade,” added, “They played so well, their balls went far, and their defense was so fast. I guess this is what it’s like to be a little hot pepper. We had a good game and my heart was beating fast,” said Choi, describing how it felt to play against the Japanese team. Kang Yoon-seong, who played first base on the day, added, “I was surprised that the Japanese players were so good at defense.”

To conclude the day’s activities, the players from Geumdong and the Aichi Prefectural Union Team held a welcome ceremony with players from Shindong Elementary School from Taiwan. The students welcomed their friends from overseas with recorder performances, while the students from Xiantong Elementary School livened up the atmosphere with fun dances. The students from the three countries exchanged gifts, and although they didn’t understand each other well, they quickly bonded and enjoyed the event together.

Mr. Moon Sung-hwan, a teacher at Geumdong Elementary School who leads the school’s T-ball team, said, “It’s a rare experience to be able to spend time with children from other countries at such a young age. The memories of this day will be a great source of nourishment for the rest of their lives.” He hoped that the students would finish the tournament with good memories.

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