Fukushima (Japan). Hosts Japan made a winning start as they thrashed Australia 8-1 in a one-sided softball encounter on Wednesday at the Tokyo Olympics after a year's delay . The match was held in an almost completely empty stadium. Fans are banned from entering the stadium due to the coronavirus pandemic.
These games were postponed last year due to the pandemic. The match between Japan and Australia was played in a stadium with a capacity of 30,000 spectators but during this time only about 50 spectators were present, including team and Olympic officials and media persons. Japan is defending the gold medal won by defeating the United States in softball at the 2008 Beijing Games. Softball and baseball were dropped from the 2012 and 2016 Games, but both have returned at the Tokyo Games. They will not find a place in the 2024 Paris Games but are expected to be included in the 2028 Los Angeles Games.