Hosts Chinese Taipei and Japan moved a step closer to reaching the final of the World University Baseball Championship as the super round began in Chiayi today.
Chinese Taipei emerged victorious from a thrilling match with the United States as they recorded a narrow 8-7 win at the Chiayi City Baseball Field.
Japan also won their opening super round encounter but it was in contrasting fashion to Chinese Taipei as they thrashed South Korea 15-0.
The top two teams following the conclusion of the super round are due to contest the final on Sunday (July 15).
A new name is guaranteed to be on the trophy at this year's edition of the event - the first World University Baseball Championship held since 2010 - as defending champions Cuba are not competing.
In the other match held today, Russia eased to a 16-1 victory over Australia in the consolation round.
Chinese Taipei and Japan are set to return to action on Thursday (July 12), with the winner of the match all-but guaranteed a place in the tournament's showpiece game.
South Korea and the US will both hope to bounce back from their opening losses when they are scheduled to clash on Friday (July 13).