- Johnny Esfeller
Japan's elite Far East Bloomers women's baseball team trains at IMG Academy
This week at IMG Academy, Japan's elite women's baseball team, the Far East Bloomers, are conducting a camp on campus to work on team chemistry, conditioning and fundamentals. Women's baseball has its roots in the United States going as far back as 1867, but organized international competition in women's baseball did not begin until 2001. In 2008, the Hong Kong, China, Phoenix Cup International Women's Baseball Tournament was founded, and so too, were the Bloomers. Since then, they have risen to become one of the most vaunted teams in international competition, winning the 2011 Phoenix Cup, and are hungry to take the title once again. Bloomers player/manager Keiko Suzuki was eager to bring the team to IMG Academy after visiting the campus 18-years prior.
"I like this Academy and I wanted to put the team here because I knew it would provide a great practice for them, and the team is very happy here," said Suzuki. "The fields are great, they have good coaches, the cafeteria is beautiful and everything here is great for us."
The team began camp on Aug. 14 and are training through Aug. 18.
Scenes of the Far East Bloomers training at IMG Academy: