Clear your schedule on the 21st of November, as the first pitch of the Canberra Cavalry’s 2019-20 ABL season will be thrown at MIT Ballpark.
Baseball Australia has released the fixtures for the tenth ABL season, with the 2019/2020 Australian Baseball League regular season to start a week later than usual and finish with a blockbuster lineup of divisional matchups.
Baseball Australia chief Cam Vale confirmed the season will start on 21 November to avoid a clash with Team Australia’s qualification for the 2020 Olympics.
Canberra will play five home and five away matches across the season, starting their season by hosting Melbourne and ending with three straight series against division rivals, travelling to Brisbane and Sydney other sides of a home series against Auckland.
Here are the three series we think will define the Cavalry’s quest for a second Claxton Shield.
Cavalry host Aces (21-24 November)
The Cavalry will kick off their season in a home series against the Melbourne Aces, with revenge on the Aces’ mind after they were eliminated by the Cavalry last season in the inaugural ABL wildcard game.
It is a repeat fixture of last season’s opening series between the two sides, but the Cavs will be hoping to bury the memory of the 4-0 series thrashing and get their season off to a winning start. Canberra has a history of slow starts but can’t afford to in the 2019-20 season, with a monumental road trip to follow the opening series.
The side will make the biggest road trip in the league, heading to Perth in round two before making the trip across the ditch to take on the Auckland Tuatara in round three, making the opening series against the Aces a must win for the Cavalry.
Cavalry host Blue Sox (12-15 December)
Following their mammoth road trip, Canberra will host back-to-back home series which easily is the most exciting part of the schedule, facing conference rivals Sydney and Brisbane in the capital.
The Cavalry finished third in the ABL’s Northeast conference behind the Blue Sox and the Bandits, forcing the side to a Wildcard playoff match. If the Cavs are to finish top of the conference to host a home semi-final, the back-to-back home series in December will be crucial. The last time the Blue Sox came to the capital they were swept 4-0 so a repeat is on the cards.
Bandits host Cavalry (9-12 January)
In a venue that has brought heartbreak to the Cavalry fans season after season, the Bandits will host the Cavalry in a match that will define both team’s seasons. The Cavalry will finish the season with an in-conference gauntlet against Brisbane, Auckland, and Sydney, with the final standings in the conference set to come down to the last three weekends in the regular season.
If the Cavalry are to make the Conference final, an away series win against the three-time defending champions is a must.
Canberra Cavalry’s 2019-20 ABL Season
host Melbourne 21-24 November
vs Perth 28 November – 1 December
vs Aukland 5-8 December
host Sydney 12-15 December
host Brisbane 19-22 December
vs Geelong 26-30 December
host Adelaide 2-5 January
vs Brisbane 9-12 January
host Aukland 16-19 January
vs Sydney 23-26 January
Wildcard 29 January
ABL Semifinals 30 January 2 February
ABL Championship Series 6-9 February
See all the team’s fixtures by clicking here.