Softball at the 2008 Summer OlympicsSoftball at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing will be held over a ten day period starting August 12 and culminating with the medal finals on August 21. All games will be played at the Fengtai Softball Field. Olympic softball is competed by women only, men compete in the similar sport of baseball.
The International Olympic Committee has voted to remove softball from the program for the 2012 Olympics, so this is the last time that softball will be contested at the Olympics unless it is reinstated at a future date.
Competition formatEight teams will compete in the Olympic softball tournament, and the competition consists of two rounds. The preliminary round follows a round robin format, where each of the teams plays all the other teams once. Following this, the top four teams advance to a single elimination round consisting of two semifinal games, and finally the bronze and gold medal games.
QualificationThe eight teams in the Olympic softball tournament will qualify through a series of tournaments. China, as the host nation, is guaranteed one automatic entry. The top four finishers at the 2006 Softball World Championships will be qualified for the Olympic tournament. Finally, there will be continental qualifying tournaments for Europe/Africa, Pan-America, and Asia/Oceania, with the winners of each tournament earning a spot in the Olympic tournament.
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