Softball at the 2008 Summer Olympics
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at the Games of the XXIX Olympiad
Pictogram used to identify softball at the 2008 Games
|Venue||Fengtai Softball Field|
Softball at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing took place over a ten-day period starting August 12 and culminating in the medal finals on August 21. All games were played at the Fengtai Softball Field. Olympic softball is a women only competition, with men competing in the similar sport of baseball.
This is the most recently contested softball tournament in Olympic history, as the International Olympic Committee voted to remove baseball from the program in the 2012 Olympics. Along with baseball, softball was rejected for inclusion in the 2016 Summer Olympics at the IOC's meeting in October 2009. However, following a 2016 IOC vote, softball will again be conducted for the 2020 Games.
In one of the major upsets of the 2008 Summer Olympics, Japan defeated U.S. 3-1 (after falling to the U.S. 0-7 in the round-robin) to win the gold medal. The Americans have won gold and dominated their opponents in the previous three Olympics. This is the only Olympic Softball Gold Medal that the U.S. has not won.
Eight teams compete in the Olympic softball tournament, and the competition consists of two rounds. The preliminary round follows a round robin format, where each of the teams plays all the other teams once. Following this, the top four teams advance to a page playoff system round consisting of two semifinal games, and finally the bronze and gold medal games.
The eight teams in the Olympic softball tournament will qualify through a series of tournaments. China, as the host nation, is guaranteed one automatic entry. The top four finalists at the 2006 Softball World Championships will be qualified for the Olympic tournament. Finally, there will be continental qualifying tournaments for Europe/Africa, Pan-America, and Asia/Oceania, with the winners of each tournament earning a spot in the Olympic tournament.
|Aug 20-29, 2006||2006 ISF World Championship||Beijing|| United States|
|June 9–16, 2007||Europe & Africa Olympic Qualifying Tournament||Trieste||Netherlands|
|Feb. 1-5, 2007||Asian & Oceania Olympic Qualifying Tournament||Tainan City||Chinese Taipei1|
|Aug. 19-24, 2007||Pan-American Olympic Qualifying Tournament||Valencia||Venezuela|
^Note 1 : Chinese Taipei is the official IOC designation for the state officially referred to as the Republic of China, more commonly known as Taiwan. (See also political status of Taiwan for details.)
|Qualified for the semifinals|
The top four teams will advance to the semifinal round.
|Chinese Taipei||2||5||10||23||.286||5||2-0 vs. CHN/VEN|
|China||2||5||19||21||.286||5||1-1 vs. TPE/VEN|
|Venezuela||2||5||15||35||.286||5||0-2 vs. CHN/TPE|
Tiebreaking procedures follow the International Softball Federation's standard procedure for the resolution of ties.
- August 12
- August 13
- August 14
- August 15
- August 16
- August 17
- August 18
The loser of 1&2 seed game will play the winner of the 3&4 seed game in the bronze medal match. The loser of the bronze medal match wins the bronze medal while the winner goes on to play the winner of the 1&2 seed game for the gold medal in the gold medal match.
|Semifinals||Bronze medal game||Gold medal game|
Bronze medal match
Winner advances to gold medal match. Loser wins bronze medal.
|WP: Yukiko Ueno(4-1) LP: Tanya Harding(3-2)|
AUS: Kerry Wyborn,
JPN: Megu Hirose
Gold medal match
|WP: Yukiko Ueno(5-1) LP: Cat Osterman(3-1)|
JPN: Eri Yamada (2)
USA: Crystl Bustos (6)
- Michaelis, Vicki (2005-07-08). "Baseball, softball bumped from Olympics". USA Today. Retrieved August 17, 2008.
- "Olympic Leaders Approve Golf and Rugby for 2016 Summer Games". Fox News. Associated Press. August 13, 2009. Retrieved 2010-02-16.
- Victor Mather (August 3, 2016). "Baseball and Softball Returning to Olympics in 2020". New York Times.
-  Archived December 11, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.