Plenty of positives for Diamondblacks despite loss

Last updated 07:35 19/11/2012
Lincoln Holdzkom
World Baseball Classic
TOUGH NIGHT: Lincoln Holdzkom pitches during the final against Chinese Taipei.

Relevant offers

Other Sports

Umpires concede penalty that gave Team NZ a controversial win over Artemis was wrong Late penalty hands Team New Zealand controversial win over Sweden at America's Cup 'You have to play to the whistle' - Peter Burling admits he played for penalty in thrilling win over Artemis Recap: 35th America's Cup qualifying series - race day three Quiz: Test your sports knowledge - May 30 Tensions rise between Dean Barker and Ben Ainslie after America's Cup crash America's Cup class yachts are basically aircraft wings balancing on surfboards Southland discus thrower Marshall Hall throws himself into world championship reckoning Four more medals for Lisa Carrington and kayaking team-mates in successful World Cup regatta North Island Blokart champs to breeze around Sanson Domain

New Zealand have fallen at the final hurdle in their unlikely quest to qualify for next year's World Baseball Classic.

For the second time in four days the Diamondblacks could not match the power of hosts Chinese Taipei, who secured the only spot up for grabs at next year's showpiece tournament following a 9-0 win over the Kiwis in the final of the four-team qualifying event.

Not even a five-hour rain delay could slow down a Chinese Taipei team that was obviously on a mission after failing to earn a win during the 2009 World Baseball Classic.

Their losses to South Korea and China in that tournament were called a "national shame" by the local press.

After easing through its first two games by a combined 26-0, including a 10-0 opening win over New Zealand, Chinese Taipei fell just short of a third straight mercy-rule win, but there was never any doubt over the result.

Shortstop Chih-Sheng Lin's leadoff hits in the second and the fourth paved the way for scoring rallies, and Chang's three-run double in the fourth helped seal the victory. Chang contributed another run in the seventh with a single.

The game got a tad ugly when Kiwi relief pitcher Lincoln Holdzkom hit Cheng-Min Peng on the head with his pitch right after New Zealand allowed two runs with a single and a throwing error in the bottom of the seventh.

Both Holdzkom and New Zealand manager Andy Skeels were ejected, as Peng had already been hit once in the shoulder by reliever Riki Paewai in the fourth and both benches had been warned.

Despite two big losses against Chinese Taipei, previously unranked New Zealand still had a lot to smile about in the first attempt at qualifying for the World Baseball Classic.

They upset a Philippines squad loaded with Minor Leaguers 10-6 and trounced the Johnny Damon-led Thailand team 12-2.

Chinese Taipei will play host to Korea, Australia and the Netherlands when the group meets at the Intercontinental Baseball Stadium in the central Taiwanese city of Taichung in March.

Ad Feedback

- Stuff

Special offers
Opinion poll

Will Shane Cameron beat Kali Meehan on Saturday?

For sure. Cameron will knock him out.

It will be close but I think Cameron on points.

Meehan will knock him out. This is his last fight.

I'm tipping Meehan to win on points.

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content