1st World University Baseball Championship, Messina

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 Last friday in Messina,the opening ceremony of the inaugural edition of the World University Baseball Championship was held in Messina, Sicily in Italy . The Championship will there take place until August 11th. Sicily was the scene of the 1997 Summer Universiade and Messina was the location for the swimming and diving competitions. Although this is the first edition of the WUC, baseball was twice an optional sport at the Summer Universiades in Buffalo, USA (1993) and Fukuoka, Japan (1995).

 

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1st World University Baseball Championship, Messina
Brussels, 06/08/2002

The history of the town has always been closely linked to the economic and strategic importance of the site. Messina became the first Roman colony in Sicily. It almost reached the size of a metropolis under the Byzantine Empire and became an important military port under the Angevins. This period of splendor lasted many centuries during which there flourished all types of cultural activities with the presence of distinguished humanists, philosophers and artists. Then the city encountered some harsh times with the Great Plague of 1743, the terrible earthquakes of 1783 and 1908 which destroyed 90% of the town. All this contributed to reducing the role and importance of Messina. After rebuilding the town, the inhabitants have managed to recover a notable part of the historical, cultural and monumental heritage, giving back to Messina the role that it deserves.
Messina has staged a major baseball tournament before. It was the venue for the 23rd Baseball World Cup, Southern Conference. The venue for the tournament is the Baseball Stadium of the University of Messina.
10 countries are registered for this World University Championship.