Japan Advances to WBC Semifinals


Tokyo, March 16 (Jiji Press)--Japan defeated Italy 9-3 in a quarterfinal match of the World Baseball Classic in Tokyo Thursday, reaching semifinals for the fifth consecutive tournament.

Kazuma Okamoto, a Yomiuri Giants slugger, hit a three-run home run, leading a four-run third inning for Japan. Major League star Shohei Ohtani gave up two runs in 4 2/3 innings for Japan.

Japan will face Mexico or Puerto Rico in a semifinal game in Miami Monday.


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