Softball’s international governing body, the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) has released the schedule for the sport’s return to the Olympic Games with the Aussie Spirit to open competition against host nation Japan.
The Aussie Spirit will have the honour of being one of the first nations to begin Olympic competition two days ahead of the Opening Ceremony in a blockbuster opening game against Japan at Fukushima Azuma Stadium at 9:00am JST on Wednesday 22 July.
They will then face Italy at 3:00pm JST on Thursday 23 July at the same venue before the competition breaks on Friday 24 July for the Opening Ceremony.
Softball then moves to Yokohama Baseball Stadium from Saturday 25 July where the Aussie Spirit will play Canada (Saturday 25 July, 9:00am JST) and the USA (Sunday 26 July, 9:00am JST).
Regular fixtures conclude with Australia taking on Mexico on Monday 27 July at 7:00pm JST.
Both the Bronze Medal and Gold Medal games will be held on Tuesday 28 July at 1:00pm JST and 7:00pm JST respectively.
“It’s very exciting to have the WBSC release the schedule for our return to the Olympic Games in Tokyo,” said David Pryles, Chief Executive Officer at Softball Australia.
“The current Aussie Spirit squad of 20 players, as well as staff, are well underway with their preparations. The squad had a fantastic few days last week at the Australian Institute of Sport and will soon travel to the United States to compete in the National Pro Fastpitch League as the Aussie Peppers of Minnesota to ensure we’re in the best possible position to win a fifth Olympic Medal.”