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Long-overdue baseball hall of fame honors fathers of the sport

For a country that considers baseball its national sport, it may sound strange that for a long time Taiwan has not had a baseball hall of fame to honor those who made significant contributions to the development of baseball in the country.

That all changed January this year when a veteran baseball journalist Huang Ying-po (黃瑛坡) and other baseball lovers together established the Taiwan Baseball Hall of Fame Association.

According to Huang, the association would soon begin the selection process to decide which veteran baseballers would be chosen as the first batch of Taiwanese baseball hall of famers.

Two months later, the association made the long-awaited announcement to name the four inductees into the debut Taiwanese baseball hall of fame on March 31.

The four individuals, four of the biggest names in Taiwan baseball history that have long deserved honoring, are Tseng Chi-en (曾紀恩), Hung Teng-sheng (洪騰勝), Hsieh Kuo-cheng (謝國城) and Yen Hsiao-chang (嚴孝章).

They were recognized for their excellence in playing, managing and serving the sport, according to the Taipei-based association.

Taiwan owes its baseball development to the four legends, the association said, adding that all except Hung will be posthumously honored at an official ceremony in August.

The China Post wants to give the highest credit to the association for making the long-time dream of establishing the Taiwan baseball hall of fame a reality.

As rightfully pointed out by Huang, it has been more than a century since baseball was introduced to Taiwan, and it is only appropriate and about time that the nation finally recognizes those who have made significant contributions to the sport in Taiwan.

Following in the footsteps of the United States, Japan and Canada, now Taiwan has become one of the countries that has established a baseball hall of fame.

All of the four inductees, Hung, Hsieh, Yen and Tseng, are more than deserving recipients of the title of baseball hall of famer because they all left gigantic and everlasting legacies on the sport on the island.

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