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Tryouts for Korean-only Australian baseball team to be held in Seoul

The new all-Korean club in the Australian Baseball League (ABL) will have a tryout in Seoul next month open to all former amateur or professional players, its officials said Tuesday.

Korean sports management firm Winter Ball Korea, which will oversee the club’s operations, said it will hold the tryout on Sept. 17 at Mokdong Stadium in western Seoul in conjunction with the Korea Professional Baseball Players Association (Kpbpa).

The club’s inaugural manager, former Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) MVP Koo Dae-sung, and its general manager, ex-KBO pitcher Park Choong-sik, will be on hand to watch the tryouts.

Those selected will join the yet-to-be-named club, which will be based in Geelong, about 75 kilometers (47 miles) southwest of Melbourne.

“Players who make this team will have a brand-new opportunity and enjoy a special experience,” Koo said in a statement released by Winter Ball Korea. “I hope to see a lot of candidates at the tryout.”

Anyone with previous playing experience can apply at The deadline is Sept. 14. Once the roster is set, the team will have a formal launching ceremony sometime in October and depart for Australia on Nov. 1, according to Winter Ball Korea.

The team will be the first non-Australian club in the ABL and also the first all-Korean ball club to compete in a foreign league.

The ABL currently has clubs in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.

The 2018-2019 season will open on Nov. 15, and the Korean team will have its first game against the Sydney Blue Sox in Sydney on the first day of the season.

Former Hanwha Eagles outfielder Kim Kyeong-eon, released by the KBO team after last season, has already committed to play for the new ABL club. The 35-year-old batted .271 with 55 homers and 393 RBIs in 1,183 KBO games.


Gangwon FC faces FIFA reckoning for falsifying transfer documents

The Korean football club Gangwon FC are set to face punishment from FIFA after doctoring documents on a foreign player transfer, a source said Tuesday.

According to the source, FIFA’s discipline committee held a meeting last Thursday to review Gangwon’s wrongdoing in the transfer of Mexican forward Edgar Pacheco in March 2016. The source said Gangwon forged the signature of FC Juarez, Pacheco’s former club, in a transfer document that was submitted to FIFA.

Following Gangwon’s signing of Pacheco, the Mexican football association then refused to issue an international transfer agreement after claiming that FC Juarez’s signature was fabricated. Due to this, Pacheco wasn’t able to register as a K League player for five months. He later made his debut for Gangwon but played in only one match and left for the Bahraini club Al-Najma in 2017.

The source added that FIFA is likely to mete out punishments this week. Under the rule, FIFA could impose a transfer ban on Gangwon for a certain period of time, along with a hefty fine.

Gangwon are currently eighth in the 12-team K League 1 this season with seven wins, six draws and nine losses.

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