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Sunak to attend baseball game during trip to Washington

Prime Minister Rishi will attend a Major League Baseball game in Washington during his visit to the US (Jordan Pettitt/PA)
David Hughes, PA Political Editor

Rishi Sunak is to attend a Major League Baseball game during his visit to the United States – but will not have the honour of throwing the ceremonial first pitch.

The Prime Minister will watch the Washington Nationals take on the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday in a game which will celebrate US and UK ties.

The idea of Mr Sunak throwing the first pitch was raised with No 10, but instead that privilege will go to Stuart Taylor, a former British Army warrant office and chief executive of the Allied Forces Foundation, which supports injured servicemen and women.

The game, at Nationals Park, will see a military flypast, performances by the Royal Marine Corps of Drums and the Washington Tattoo, and the singing of both the US and UK anthems.

Mr Sunak, a sports fan who spent time in the US studying at Stanford and working at a California hedge fund, will meet the players before the game and hold talks with business leaders and service personnel and veterans at the ground.

But he will not take to the pitcher’s mound, Downing Street said.

“These sorts of things are pitched to us from time to time but, at this event, the first pitch is going to be thrown by Stuart Taylor, who is the CEO of the Allied Forces Foundation,” the Prime Minister’s spokesman said.

“That, I think we felt, was the most appropriate way of highlighting the breadth and depth of the UK-US relationship, particularly focusing on service personnel and veterans.”

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