In the Senbatsu High School baseball game held at Koshien Stadium, the female manager of Joto High School in Tokushima served as a knocker during the pre-game practice.
This is the first time for a girl to serve as a knocker in the spring and summer Koshien.
The knocker was Yuna Nagano, a member and manager of Joto's women's club.
Joto, who will be making their first appearance in the 21st century, has only 12 players, and Nagano has supported the team by serving as a knocker from daily practice.
At the Koshien in the spring and summer, last summer the women's club members were allowed to be in charge of the ball person, such as passing the ball to the knocker and handling foul balls in the pre-match practice, and from this tournament, they can play knockers on the condition that they are usually involved in practice.
Against this backdrop, Nagano played as a knocker in the pre-match practice session for the third match against Tokai University Sugo High School in Tokyo on 22 September, and appeared on the field in the team's uniform.
Mr. Nagano occasionally showed a smile and a serious expression, and after hitting a ball to the infield for nearly two minutes, he switched knockers to coach Ryosuke Shinji, who received warm applause from the stadium.
Also, at Hikari High School in Yamaguchi, where they participated in the first match, women's manager Sakura Nishihara was responsible for passing the ball to the knocker during the pre-match practice.
The female club member who handed the ball to her
Sakura Nishihara of Hikari High School in Yamaguchi said with a smile about being the first member of the women's club to pass the ball to a knocker at the Koshien in the spring and summer, saying, "I was very nervous.
She added, "I hope that girls will continue to play an active role in the world of baseball in the future, and I hope that I can give hope to girls who have played baseball like me and girls who are working hard with the goal of standing in Koshien as managers."
The place for female club members to play an active role in Koshien gradually expands
In the spring and summer Koshien, the opportunities for female club members to play an active role have gradually expanded.
According to the Japan High School Baseball Federation, only boys are allowed to participate in games and practices for safety reasons.
Starting with the 1996 summer national high school baseball, scorers began to be on the bench, and the female manager of Higashichiku High School in Fukuoka was on the bench for the first time in the spring and summer Koshien.
in the 2008 Senbatsu High School baseball game, a member of the women's club of Karyo High School in Yamaguchi was not allowed to participate in the pre-tournament Koshien practice, and in the summer of 2016, when a member of the Oita High School girls' club participated as a knock assistant in the pre-tournament Koshien practice,
It was a
big discussion in response to the fact that it was stopped by tournament officials.
Then, at Senbatsu in 2017, the women's team members were allowed to take sufficient safety measures such as wearing helmets in the Koshien practice before the tournament, pass the ball to the outfield knock from the artificial turf part of the foul zone,
and organize equipment in front of the bench.
In addition, from Koshien last summer,
he was allowed to pass the ball to the knocker in defensive practice just before the game and to be in charge of the ball person handling foul balls during the game.
From this tournament,
it was newly allowed to play as a knocker in the defensive practice just before the game, and the female manager of Joto High School in Tokushima actually knocked.
For safety reasons, these activities are only possible if you are involved in the same practice as usual.
On the other hand, the finals of the national high school women's baseball team, also known as the "Koshien of women's baseball," are held in Koshien.