The first round at the European Championship 2016 in Hoofddorp, Netherlands ended on Tuesday with six games. In the morning Russia beat Great Britain 11-5 for their first win in the tournament and Spain shut out France 6-0 to remain undefeated. In the afternoon Germany got payback against the Czech Republic for a loss at the WBC Qualifier in March, prevailing 3-1. Meanwhile Italy and Belgium celebrated lopsided wins over Croatia (22-4) and Greece (18-1). In the evening the Netherlands won their fifth game in as many days against Sweden (8-3).
On Wednesday ten teams will enjoy a rest day at the European Championship, except for France and Sweden. Both will meet at the stadium in Hoofddorp for the game for seventh place at 14:30. On Thursday the final round and the consolation round will start.
Situation Final Round:
The Netherlands and Spain enter the final round with two wins each, while Italy and Germany have one, Belgium and the Czech Republic none. The top two after the round robin will meet in the Gold Medal Game on Sunday.
Situation Consolation Round 9th to 12th:
Croatia and Russia are in the pole position to remain in the A-Pool, as they both have one win each to start the consolation round. The teams ranked 11th and 12th need to play in the European Championship B-Pool next year.
Player of the Day:
Denis Leonov (Russia). He entered the game against Great Britain with Russia trailing 0-4 in the top of the third inning. He then allowed just one more run on six hits and three walks in seven innings of strong relief. He struck out 11 and helped giving Russia an important win in their hopes to avoid relegation to the B-Pool.
Russia and Germany. Russia and Germany celebrated two important comeback wins on the last day of the first round. Russia erased a 0-4 deficit with 11 combined runs in the sixth and seventh against Great Britain. Germany scored three runs in the top of the ninth to erase a 0-1 deficit against the Czech Republic.
Stat of the Day:
11 runs. Belgium scored 11 runs in one inning against Greece. They sent 15 batters to the plate in the second en route to an 18-1 blowout. Amazingly all 11 runs scored with two outs, as Benjamin Dille and Thomas De Wolf had led off with back-to-back groundouts.
Fact of the Day:
Between 1969 and 1999 there was a span of 30 years where only Italy and the Netherlands reached the final at the European Championship. The Dutch team alone hasn’t missed a final since 1967 when they didn’t participate. At the last three European Championships the final always was between the Netherlands and Italy.
Results Day 5:
Russia – Great Britain 11-5
Great Britain 220 000 010 5 9 1 Russia 000 006 50X 11 13 2
Russia came back from a 0-4 deficit to beat Great Britain 11-5 on Tuesday morning in a Group A matchup at the European Championship in Hoofddorp. For Russia it was their first win in five games, while Great Britain dropped to 0-5. Both teams will fight for relegation in the consolation round starting on Thursday. Full recap.
Czech Republic – Germany 1-3
Germany 000 000 003 3 8 1 Czech Republic 000 000 010 1 3 0
Germany celebrated a 3-1 comeback win over the Czech Republic on Tuesday afternoon in Nieuw Vennep. In a Group A matchup at the European Championship the German squad erased a 0-1 deficit with three runs in the top of the ninth and pocketed an important win for the final round. The Czech team dropped to 3-2 and will enter the next stage at 0-2 instead of 1-1. Full recap.
Sweden – Netherlands 3-8
Netherlands 001 400 300 8 11 4 Sweden 201 000 000 3 6 4
The Netherlands closed out the first round at the European Championship in Hoofddorp with an 8-3 win over Sweden on Tuesday evening. They improved to 5-0 and won Group A. Sweden dropped to 2-3 and will play for seventh place on Wednesday. The Scandinavians actually led 2-0 and 3-1 against the Dutch team in the last preliminary game, but a four-run rally in the fourth decided the outcome in favor of the heavy favorite. Full recap.
Spain – France 6-0
France 000 000 000 0 6 3 Spain 021 000 12X 6 8 0
Spain remains undefeated at the European Championship in Hoofddorp after the first round. On Tuesday morning they shut out France 6-0 for their fifth win in as many games. They will reach the final round as top seed from Group B with a 2-0 record and a pole position to advance to the Gold Medal Game. France meanwhile dropped to 2-3 and have to settle for the game for seventh place on Wednesday against Sweden. Full recap.
Croatia – Italy 4-22
Italy 276 021 4 22 21 1 Croatia 300 010 0 4 9 4
Italy used Croatia’s pitching to get rid of all frustration from Monday’s ninth-inning loss to Spain. The Squadra Azzurri put on an offensive show and blew by Croatia 22-4. Croatia actually led 3-2 after the first, but Italy added 13 combined runs in the second and third to decide the outcome early. With the win Italy improved to 4-1 in the first round. Croatia dropped to 1-4. Full recap.
Belgium – Greece 18-1
Greece 0 0 0 10 1 4 2 Belgium 5(11)2 0X 18 10 1
After France had lost in the morning to Spain, Belgium already was qualified for the final round to reach the top six at the European Championship for the first time since 1999. However they still blew by the winless Greece by a score of 18-1 in five innings. After a five-run first they scored 11 runs in the second to turn things towards 15-run rule early. Full recap.
Standings First Round:
Standings Final Round & Consolation Round:
Complete results, box scores, schedule, statistics and live play by play is available through www.baseballstats.eu
Live radio from two games each day is available through www.meinsportradio.de
Tickets are available on the official website www.ekhonkbal2016.nl
Photo by Gregor Eisenhuth