Danube Cup History | A Duna Kupa Története História | Dunajského Pohára | Donau Cup

A long-standing tradition in Central Europe is the Danube Cup, a multidisciplinary sporting competition founded in 1990 to promote peace among countries formerly separated by the Iron Curtain. Baseball (and softball) was proposed as a sport in 1995, though issues with the Slovak Federation meant that the first edition of the tournament would be in 1996 at Szentendre Sleepwalkers’ field, just north of Budapest. Since then, Austria, Hungary, and Slovakia have faced off in a round robin contest almost every year, often meeting on May 1, which coincides with Labour Day in each country. We dove deep into the Hungarian Baseball Federations (MÖBSSZ)’s annual reports through the Internet Wayback Machine to present a full history below.

The tournament has been contested in 23 of 24 years, with the only cancellation in 1999. Slovakia has been the clear winner, taking home 10 titles, with Austria close behind at eight. In 2006, the lack of one score makes it impossible to decide whether Hungary or Slovakia would take the crown. Regardless, Slovakia has been the clear favourite in the competition, going 27-13 as a senior national team (27-16 overall).

In the last decade, it has become more frequent for countries to send their Under-23 (formerly Under-21) teams. Since that change, the balance has shifted to Austria, the U23 team of which has won three of the last four Cups. In fact, Austria has won 4-of-6 since 2013, signalling a clear shift in the balance of power. In total, with the exception of the one missing game, Austria’s various teams now has the same number of wins as Slovakia with only two more losses.

Below are the results of every Danube Cup game known, with only a single result and five other scores missing. Appended are the all-time standings, including head-to-head performances of the three nations and their various teams. A record book concludes this archive, with a 27-run outburst by Slovakia in the 2019 edition (against a Hungarian team with an average age of around 15 years younger!) the all-time high score, though a 2000 match totalled 34 runs between the winner and loser.

Should the Danube Cup be contested in 2020, it would mark the 25th Anniversary of the first baseball tournament. On at least three occasions, the event has been played at the end of summer, so perhaps Austria will extend its winning streak before 2021. For more on the 2019 tournament, our full coverage is here [link].

If you are aware of the missing score from 1998, 2006, or 2007, please do get in touch.

1996 Danube Cup
May 25-26 (Szentendre)
Hungary 9 – Austria 7
Szentendre Sleepwalkers 11 – Austria 9

1997 Danube Cup
May 17-18 (Stockerau)
Austria 8 – Hungary 3
Slovakia 15 – Hungary 2
Slovakia 11 – Austria 3

1998 Danube Cup
May 30-31 (Trnava)
Austria W – Slovakia
Austria W – Hungary
Slovakia W – Hungary

1999 Danube Cup
MOBSSZ’ Annual report said it was postponed “due to the termination of the OTSH”.

2000 Danube Cup
July 8 (Nagykanizsa)
Hungary 11 – Austria 23
Hungary 2 – Slovakia 8

July 9 (Nagykanizsa)
Slovakia 7 – Austria 4

2001 Danube Cup
(Stockerau)
Hungary 12 – Slovakia 10 (12)
Hungary 9 – Austria 2
Austria 19 – Slovakia 7

2002 Danube Cup
May 18 (Trnava)
Hungary 3 – Austria 9

May 19 (Trnava)
Austria 6 – Slovakia 7
Slovakia 10 – Hungary 1

2003 Danube Cup
(Hungary)
Hungary 22 – Slovakia 0
Hungary 12 – Austria 7
Austria 11 – Slovakia 9

2004 Danube Cup
May 29
Slovakia 8 – Hungary 3

May 30
Hungary 7 – Austria 4
Austria 0 – Slovakia 9

2005 Danube Cup
May 14 (Vienna)
Slovakia 14 – Hungary 1

May 15
Hungary 7 – Austria 17
Austria 6 – Slovakia 13

2006 Danube Cup
Oct. 21.(Szentendre)
Austria U21 3 – Slovakia U21 2
Hungary 7 – Austria U21 6 (7 inns.)
Hungary – Slovakia U21 ??
Hungarian team mostly U21.

2007 Danube Cup
May 26-27 (Hungary)
Slovakia W – Hungary
Austria W – Slovakia
Austria 20 – Hungary 0 (5)

2008 Danube Cup
Bratislava
Slovakia 5 – Austria 2
Austria 5 – Hungary 4 (10)
Hungary 0 – Slovakia 10 (7)

2009 Danube Cup
August 30 (Vienna)
Hungary 5 – Austria 17
Slovakia 10 – Hungary 9
Austria 4 – Slovakia 2

2010 Danube Cup
August 29 (Jánossomorja)
Hungary 1 – Slovakia 13
Slovakia 9 – Austria U21 4
Austria U21 12 – Hungary 0

2011 Danube Cup
June 11 (Pezinok, Slovakia)
Slovakia 11 – Austria 3
Slovakia 6 – Hungary 5
Austria 0 – Hungary 10

2012 Danube Cup
May 1 (Vienna)
Hungary 3 – Austria U21 10
Slovakia 6 – Hungary 5
Austria U21 1 – Slovakia 8

2013 Danube Cup
Scheduled for May 1 in Hungary, but appears to have been contested by only Austria and Slovakia.
May 6
Slovakia 6 – Austria 10
Austria 9 – Slovakia 6

2014 Danube Cup
June 7 (Budapest)
Austria U-21 11-10 Slovakia U-21
Hungary 4-2 Austria U-21
Hungary 18-3 Slovakia U-21 (5 innings)

2015 Danube Cup
June 27 (Rohrbach)
Austria 9-2 Slovakia
Slovakia 8-2 Hungary
Austria 19-4 Hungary (5 innings)

2016 Danube Cup
Sep. 17 (Budapest)
Hungary 1-8 Slovakia
Austria U-23 6-4 Slovakia
Hungary 2-12 Austria U-23 (7 innings)

2017 Danube Cup
May 1 (Bratislava)
Slovakia 7-5 Austria U-23
Hungary 5-4 Austria U-23
Slovakia 15-1 Hungary (7 innings)

2018 Danube Cup
May 1 (Wiener Neustadt)
Austria U-23 7-6 Slovakia
Slovakia 17-7 Hungary (7 innings)
Austria U-23 21-5 Hungary (5 innings)

2019 Danube Cup
May 1 (Jánossomorja)
Slovakia 27 – Hungary U18 0
Austria U23 19 – Slovakia 8
Austria U23 14 – Hungary U18 1

Danube Cup Record Book
Most appearances: 19, Hungarian senior national team
Most titles: 10, Slovakia senior national team
Most wins: 27, Slovakia senior national team (Austria’s SNT, U21, and U23 combine for 27)
Most losses: 29, Hungary senior national team
Most consecutive wins: Austria: 3 (2008-09), Austria U23: 4 (2018-present), Hungary: 2 (2001, 2003, 2014), Slovakia: 6 (2010-12)
Most consecutive losses: Austria: 4 (2011-13), Hungary: 4 (1998-2000), Slovakia: 3 (2013-15)
Most runs in a game, winner: 27, Slovakia (2019)
Most runs in a game, loser: 10, Slovakia U21 (2014)
Most runs in a game, combined: 34, Austria 23 – Hungary 11 (2000)
Largest margin of victory: Slovakia 27 – Hungary U18 (2019) [Between senior national teams: Hungary 22, Slovakia 0 (2003)

About Gabriel Fidler

Extra Innings UK covers baseball around the world, focussing on the sport at the national team level, with features on prominent players, scouting reports, and occasional breaking news. We are fully credentialled by MLB and have covered the World Baseball Classic, continental championships, and the U.S. minor leagues.
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