Softball is a team sport popular in the United States.
It is a direct descendant of baseball and the rules of both sports are substantially similar; baseball is sometimes referred to as hardball to distinguish the two.
The first softball game was played using a rolled up boxing glove as a ball and a broomstick as a bat.
Softball was first incorporated into the Asian Games in 1990.
List of disciplines
A close kin of baseball, Softball is played on a smaller field, using a larger ball. The pitch used for a softball game is known as Diamond. Played between two teams - batters and fielders - comprising nine players each, softball is loosely based on the rules of baseball.
Softball is called so because the pitcher has to throw the ball underarm 'softly' to the batter. The batter has to advance from base to base to score runs.
The team that has the highest runs on board after seven innings wins a softball game. Fast-pitch, slow-pitch and modified-pitch are the three kinds of Softball events.
At the Doha Asian Games, only women will compete in Softball events. There will be a total of six participating teams in Asian Games 2006 softball competitions. Since the 11th Asian Games in Beijing, softball has been a regular part of the Games schedule.