Game vs. Korea offers chance to rebuild baseball in Taiwan
The China Post news staffThe nation's passion for the World Baseball Classic make-or-break game between Taiwan and South Korea Tuesday evening was phenomenal. But can such passion last long enough to revive pro-baseball in Taiwan?
March 8, 2013, 12:16 am TWN
Maybe the passion for the game was never lost; the people simply have been disappointed by the frequent game-fixing scandals and lost faith in the integrity of the players and the fairness of the game.
The latest game, which took place in Taichung and was broadcast live nationwide, set records: the highest-ever attendance for a baseball game in Taiwan, and the best ratings ever for a local TV program. At some points, one third of the nation was watching it on TV.
The Taiwan team and the nation may be a little bit disappointed with the defeat, but they definitely could take comfort that they advanced to the second round at the expense of the South Koreans, who were eliminated despite the win.
A lot of sentiments were blended into that evening. The passion for the game was flaring again, fueled by the perennial rivalry between the two countries in many aspects, such as business and sports. If China is seen as Taiwan's biggest political rival, one would be tempted to describe South Korea as Taiwan's biggest enemy in all other aspects — although that may not be a fact.
The nation was also bathed in a strong sense of relief and hope, believing that a comeback can be had.
This is not just about the nation's hope that the Taiwan team can go on to become the champion of this year's tournament. It is also a yearning for something that the nation can cling to when we are looking for a sense of pride, something that we can be proud of.