The World Baseball Softball Confederation are eyeing growth in China ©Getty Images

The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) have handed China a wildcard place for this year's Under-15 World Cup in Panama.

It means the country will send its first-ever youth side to a World Championship in the sport.

WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari said he hoped the move would aid the sport's growth in one of the world's superpowers.

"China's inclusion in the Under-15 Baseball World Cup will further boost youth programmes and help identify talent - and potential future stars - across the nation, while attracting new Chinese audiences to our game," he said.

The confirmation of China means the 12-team line-up for the boys' tournament has now been confirmed.

The line-up for the Under-15 World Cup has now been completed ©WBSC
The line-up for the Under-15 World Cup has now been completed ©WBSC

The world number 22 country, ranked fourth in Asia, have joined the likes of hosts Panama, as well back-to-back Under-15 World Cup champions Cuba.

World number one outfit United States, Japan, Chinese Taipei, South Africa, Dominican Republic, Brazil, The Netherlands, Germany and Australia will also compete in the Central American nation.

All of their teams now have until July 31 to select 20-man squads of players aged between 13 and 15.

Action will then take place in Panama City between August 10 and 19.

For the first time at the event, matches will take place over seven innings instead of nine.