The Group A action in Hluboka came to a spirited end on Tuesday, with Spain prevailing under the floodlights over the Netherlands, 4-3, in extra innings (box score). The Spanish took the lead in the extra frame after a balk call that led to heated discussions between the Dutch coaches and the umpires, with an insurance run added on an Anderson Peña sacrifice fly. The Dutch managed to advance the tying run to third base in the bottom half of the inning, but Angelo Rodriguez secured the third out for the save and a Spanish victory that places the team atop the Group A standings with a 4-0 record.
France prevailed in the day’s first game in Hluboka, but Austria took a 3-0 lead in the second inning and kept France off the scoreboard until the bottom of the third, when the French offense scored a pair of runs. France added four more in the frame that followed, only for Austria to tie it up with three runs of their own in the fifth. France then managed to pull away, and will feel fortunate to have done so after a series of defensive mishaps that gave Austria extra outs. Mathis Meurant and Julien Cojulun each had four RBI for Team France.
Great Britain rebounded from its Day 3 defeat to claim its second victory in Group A, a 14-4 defeat of Lithuania. The score was tied at four apiece after three innings, however, with the Lithuanian dugout full of smiles after four runs in the inning. Unfazed, Great Britain responded with 10 runs over the next three innings to finish off the game. Jack Warrington had three hits and four RBI, with Max Manoff contributing three RBI of his own. Catcher Al Banerjee went 3-for-4, with three runs scored.
The teams will now travel to Brno and Blansko to complete Group A play, with the Thursday action seeing Great Britain and the Netherlands meeting in the morning (11:00 CEST) in Brno, followed by France and Spain (15:00 CEST). Austria and Lithuania, who are both currently winless, will play in Blankso at 17:00 CEST.