September 30, 2005

World Classic finals to be played in San Diego

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Finals of the World Baseball Classic,
the first international tournament to include Major League
players, will be held in San Diego next March, Major League
Baseball announced.

The semi-finals of the 16-nation tournament are scheduled
for March 18 and the championship game will take place on March
20 at San Diego's new ballpark, MLB said.

Major League players will represent their countries in the
tournament, which will begin with first-round games in Tokyo,
Phoenix in Arizona, Florida and San Juan in Puerto Rico in

Second-round games will be held in San Juan and a U.S.

The United States, Japan, South Korea, Chinese Taipei,
China, Canada, South Africa, the Netherlands, Italy, Venezuela,
the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Panama and
Australia have agreed to participate in the tournament.

Cuba is also expected to play but has not formally accepted
an invitation.