Baseball: Wellard’s Hendrickson strikes against world’s best at Under-23 World Cup


Josh Hendrickson winds up a pitch for Australia in its contest against Japan earlier this week. Picture: World Baseball Softball Confederation.
Josh Hendrickson winds up a pitch for Australia in its contest against Japan earlier this week. Picture: World Baseball Softball Confederation.

WELLARD baseballer Josh Hendrickson got to test his pitching skills against a red-hot Japanese lineup in the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Under-23 World Cup in Mexico on Tuesday.

He started on the mound for Australia against a Japanese line-up ranked number one in the world, that had hit plenty of runs in each of its pool games.

Hendrickson did a great job of restricting the Japanese onslaught, only giving up four runs through five innings, a fantastic effort against the strongest under-23 line-up in the world.

The Japanese batters then went on to hit seven runs in the sixth and seven innings, winning 11-2, in Australia’s first defeat of the five games played during the pool stage.

With that result, Australia, which is ranked at number 13 in the world for the age group, qualified second in Group B, and will more than likely face Mexico in their first game of the Super Round, which starts Friday morning.

After finishing fifth at the 2014 Under-21 World Cup, Australia will finish sixth or higher, and gain valuable WBSC World Ranking points leading into an important international tournament cycle, including the Premier12 and 2020 Olympics.