Little League World Series (Middle East-Africa Region)

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The Middle East-Africa Region was one of the eight "international" (non-U.S.) regions that participated in the Little League World Series from 2008 to 2012. The Arabian-American Little League in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia won each of the three MEA championships until 2011 when the Reverend John Foundation Little League from Kampala, Uganda won the tournament, however the team from Uganda was not able to participate after their visa applications to enter the United States were denied,[1] and Dhahran was invited to participate in their place.[2] In 2012, a team from Lugazi, Uganda won the tournament.

Prior to 2008, Middle Eastern and African teams competed in either the Europe/Middle East/Africa region (EMEA) or the Transatlantic region. The Transatlantic and EMEA regions were geographically identical. Leagues from the Transatlantic region generally consisted of children and other dependents of American expatriates, typically Armed Forces personnel, international organization members, and oil company workers (such as the team representing the Saudi Aramco Residential Camp in Dhahran). The leagues within the EMEA region consisted of players native to the league's own country. In practice, however, only European teams competed in the EMEA region, as no teams from the Middle East or Africa ever competed for the regional championship.

The region was disbanded following the 2012 LLWS due to a major reorganization triggered by Little League's announcement that Australia would receive an automatic berth beginning with the 2013 LLWS. As a result of this announcement:[3]

  • African countries will now be placed in the Europe Region, which will be renamed the Europe and Africa Region.
  • Middle Eastern countries will become part of the former Asia-Pacific Region, which will be renamed the Asia-Pacific and Middle East Region. Israel and Turkey, traditionally considered part of the Middle East, were not part of the MEA Region; they were in the former Europe Region because of their membership in the European zone of the International Baseball Federation. Those two countries will remain in the renamed Europe and Africa Region.

Regional championship[edit]

The list below lists each country's participant in the MEA Little League Region Tournament. That year's winner is indicated in green.

Year Kuwait
Kuwait
Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
South Africa
South Africa
Uganda
Uganda
United Arab Emirates
United Arab Emirates
Qatar
Qatar
2008 Kuwait LL
Kuwait
Arabian American LL
Dhahran
No representative Rev. John Foundation LL
Kampala
Dubai LL
Dubai
No representative
2009 Kuwait LL
Kuwait
Arabian American LL
Dhahran
No representative No representative Dubai LL
Dubai
No representative
2010 Kuwait LL
Kuwait
Arabian American LL
Dhahran
Cape Town LL
Cape Town
Rev. John Foundation LL
Kampala
Dubai LL
Dubai
No representative
2011 Kuwait LL
Kuwait
Arabian American LL
Dhahran
Kwa Zulu Natal BB Association LL
Durban
Rev. John Foundation LL
Kampala[a]
Dubai LL
Dubai
No representative
2012 Kuwait LL
Kuwait
Arabian American LL
Dhahran
No representative Lugazi LL
Lugazi
Dubai LL
Dubai
Qatar LL
Doha

LLWS results[edit]

As of the 2012 Little League World Series.

Year Champion City LLWS Record
2008 Arabian American LL Saudi Arabia Dhahran First Round 0–3
2009 Arabian American LL Saudi Arabia Dhahran First Round 1–2
2010 Arabian American LL Saudi Arabia Dhahran Pool C Fourth Place 0–3
2011 Arabian American LL[a] Saudi Arabia Dhahran Round 2 1–2
2012 Lugazi LL Uganda Lugazi Round 1 1–2

Notes[edit]

Lugazi, Uganda won the regional championship in 2012 and became the first African team to compete in the Little League World Series. Not all the players were able to make the trip due to costs. Traditionally, the team practices barefoot, but Little League World Series supporters provided the team with baseball cleats. Justine Makisimu made the first African hit (base hit). As popular as this team became, they were not one of the top contenders in the Little League World Series. Uganda lost to Panama 9–3, and Mexico 12–0, eliminating them in two games. However, they beat Oregon 3-2 in a Consolation Game. [4][5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Communications Division (July 22, 2011). "Visa Applications Denied for Little League Team from Uganda". Little League. Retrieved July 30, 2011. 
  2. ^ Communications Division. "Arabian-American Little League of Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, to Receive Berth in Little League Baseball World Series". Little League. Retrieved August 2, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Regions Realigned for 2013: Australia to Play in Little League Baseball World Series" (Press release). Little League Baseball. August 29, 2012. Retrieved September 17, 2012. 
  4. ^ Kerber, Fred. "Big cheers, then defeat, for Uganda at LLWS". The New York Post. Retrieved 19 August 2012. 
  5. ^ Armas, Genaro C. "Uganda Eliminated at Little League World Series". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 19 August 2012. 

External links[edit]