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Cuba — a nation known for churning out some incredible ballplayers over the years — won its first-ever Little League World Series game on Saturday.
It wasn’t just a win either. It was a statement 11-1 win over the team from Sydney, Australia.
The kids from Bayamo, Cuba, put on an offensive clinic and sent the fans home early thanks to the LLWS’s mercy rule which ends a game if a team leads by 10 runs after 4 innings.
The Caribbean nation sent a team to Williamsport this year for the first time in the tournament’s history.
This was thanks to an expansion of the tournament’s field that began in 2022. In 2023, Cuba had a direct entry into the tournament, which made the country the 29th to appear at the Little League World Series.
Cuba needed Saturday’s win to stay alive in the double-elimination tournament. In their first game — and LLWS debut — they faced Japan. It was a close 1-0 affair, but the youngsters from Tokyo managed to pitch a combined no-hitter.
Still, to keep things that tight against a Japanese entry is pretty impressive.
Fortunately for Cuba, the bats clearly woke up against Australia and now they’ll face Panama on Sunday.
Follow on Twitter: @Matt_Reigle