The Washington Post

Little League World Series: Saudi Arabia replaces disqualified Uganada team

Danny Almonte’s name will forever linger in the history of the Little League World Series.

Surely you remember him.

In 2001, the left-handed flame-thrower earned the nickname “Little Unit” as he led his team from the Bronx to a third place finish in South Williamsport, Pa. Only weeks later was it revealed that Almonte was 14 years old — two years older than the cut off for the competition.

In an effort to avoid a similarly embarrassing situation, the U.S. State Department put the kibosh on Uganda’s Rev. John Foundation team’s trip across the Atlantic after discrepancies over player ages emerged.

The team was poised to become the first African team to ever compete at the Little League World Series.

Now Saudi Arabia’s team from Dhahran — which lost to Rev. John Foundation in last month’s Middle East and Africa region tournament — will take the Ugandan team’s place when play begins Aug. 18.

Matt Brooks is the high school sports editor for The Washington Post. He's an Arlington native and longtime District resident and was previously a high school sports reporter, editor for several blogs and Early Lead contributor with The Post.

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