The Travelodge Aussie Spirit are well into their preparations to qualify for a fifth Olympics at the WBSC Asia/Oceania Qualifier in Shanghai, China from 24-28 September.
Everything you need to know for next week’s tournament including game times and streaming information.
An initial squad of 20 was selected and sent to Japan for a number of games against local teams before the final 15 were selected to compete against China, Chinese Taipei, New Zealand, Korea, Hong Kong, Indonesia and the Philippines.
Two-time Olympic medalist and Australia’s most capped player Stacey Porter has been named Captain of the team with South Australian Belinda White named Vice Captain.
The final team includes:
- Michelle Cox
- Chelsea Forkin
- Leigh Godfrey
- Rachel Lack
- Stacey McManus
- Kaia Parnaby
- Leah Parry
- Gabbie Plain
- Stacey Porter (C)
- Carmelle Sorensen
- Tarni Stepto
- Taylah Tsitsikronis
- Jade Wall
- Clare Warwick
- Belinda White (VC)
Australia will play three games over three days in an attempt to finish in the top two of their group before the Super Rounds begin on Friday 27 and Saturday 28 September.
The Travelodge Aussie Spirit will travel to Shanghai on Saturday 21 September.
WBSC Asia/Oceania Olympic Qualifier schedule
Game times listed in AEST
- Tuesday 24 September, 2:30pm – Travelodge Aussie Spirit V Chinese Taipei, Livestream link
- Wednesday 25 September, 2:30pm – Travelodge Aussie Spirit V Indonesia, Livestream link
- Thursday 26 September, 7:30pm – Travelodge Aussie Spirit V Hong Kong, Livestream link
- Friday 27 September, 5:00pm – B1 V A2
- Friday 27 September, 7:30pm – A1 V B2
- Saturday 28 September, 5:00pm – A2 V B2
- Saturday 29 September, 7:30pm – A1 V B1
Live Box Scores, Standings and Stats
Live updates will be available via the WBSC Official Tournament Website including:
The eight participating teams were placed into two groups, after a draw held on 10 July at the WBSC headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland:
Group A features hosts and world No. 8 China, No. 11 New Zealand, No. 13 Philippines and No. 23 Korea.
The top-ranked team in the tournament, No. 6 Chinese Taipei, will compete in Group B along with No. 7 Australia, No. 37 Indonesia and No. 42 Hong Kong.
The 12-game Opening Round will be played from 24-26 September. The top two teams in each of the two groups will be rewarded with a place in the Super Round, scheduled to be played on 27-28 September, carrying the result of the game played between each other. The top team in the tournament final standings will gain a berth for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
The six-team Olympic softball competition will be held from 22-28 July 2020. Five teams have already qualified to Tokyo 2020: Japan (host team), USA (World Champion 2018), Italy (winner of the WBSC Softball Europe/Africa Qualifier), Mexico and Canada (the top two teams from the WBSC Softball Americas Qualifier). The winner of the Asia/Oceania Qualifier will join these five nations at softball’s return to the Olympic Games.
Official Tournament Hashtag: #RoadToTokyo
Travelodge Aussie Spirit Hashtag: #BelieveInTheSpirit
Australian Olympic Team Hashtag: #TokyoTogether