Senbatsu High School Baseball will play one game in the first round and two games in the second round on the second day of the tournament.
The first match will be between Toho High School of Aichi, who has won the Senbatsu championship five times, the most in the tournament, and Tottori Johoku High School, who is making their fourth appearance in two years.
Toho will have a hard-hitting and well-stocked pitching staff led by captain Eiki Ishikawa, the younger brother of Akiya Ishikawa, who plays for professional baseball in Chunichi, aiming to follow in the footsteps of his brother, who won the Senbatsu championship four years ago.
Tottori Johoku is a team with tenacity centered on ace pitcher Shinjo Sora.
Shinjo's pitching is characterized by striking out based on two types of forkballs, and in an official game last fall, he was the driving force behind the runner-up finish in the China Tournament with a one-run average.
From the second match, they will enter the second round, where Oita Commercial and Tochigi Sakushin Gakuin, who have won the championship three times in the spring and summer, will face each other, making their seventh appearance in three years.
Oita Commercial defended their lead with a pitcher relay of pitchers Kodama Jun and Iida Rinko, who both had a zero-run ERA in official games last fall, and entered the final four at the Kyushu tournament.
On offense, they averaged four sacrifice flies and bunts per game, which they recorded in official games last fall, the most of any participating school, and they scored more runs with small tricks.
Sakushin Gakuin has a strong batting lineup, averaging 2.2 points per game in official matches last fall.
No. 3 Takamori Fuga, who has a team-leading batting average of 7/3/0, will take advantage of his 1 meters and 4.1 seconds to give the team momentum.
The third match will be against Hideaki High School in Kagawa, who won the Shikoku Tournament last fall, and Chiben Wakayama High School, who have won the championship four times in the spring and summer.
Hideaki won the Shikoku Tournament last fall with five pitchers of different types, led by pitcher Kentaro Shimomura, who throws balls that change from the right sidehand to the batter's hand.
Senbatsu has lost their first match in both of their past two tournaments, and will be aiming for their first win in their third appearance.
Chiben Wakayama is led by Harusho Nakatsuka, who hit a home run in three consecutive games at the Tournament last fall, and his seven home runs in six games shine.
Hideaki's diverse pitching staff and Chiben Wakayama's powerful batting line will hold the key to winning or losing.