Baseball and Golf
WMG2017 competition goal
Baseball is my specialty sport however I’m also playing golf as I wanted to challenge myself in another sport and meet new friends from all over the world.
Japanese league veteran pitcher Naoyuki Shimizu is to baseball what Dan Carter is to rugby. And his famous number 18 shirt carries the same aura for baseballers around the world as the number 10 jersey does in rugby circles.
A baseball legend who pitched Japan to its victorious gold medal at the 2006 World Baseball Classic while also pitching his country to a bronze medal at the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Naoyuki and his family are now based in Auckland, New Zealand and his work with Baseball New Zealand plays a key role in helping the sport grow its presence and capability here.
As head coach for Baseball New Zealand’s Under 15 team heading to the 2016 Baseball World Cup in Iwaki, Japan at the end of July, Naoyuki will use his networks in Japan to promote baseball as one of the 28 WMG2017 sports and also New Zealand as a beautiful ‘bucket list’ destination. With Kansai, Japan as host city for the next edition of World Masters Games, Naoyuki is also looking forward to providing a bridge between the Games of 2017 in his adopted country and those in 2021 in his home country.
“I still maintain connections with sporting and media organisations in Japan – writing for Japanese newspapers and business websites, lecturing and doing TV commentaries. I want to use these networks to spread the word about the wonderful opportunity to participate in World Masters Games 2017, competing seriously or for fun and making friends from all over the world.”