In what some believe to be double trouble with an ominous doubleheader against Mexico (ranked #5) and Australia’s Travelodge Aussie Spirit (ranked #7) on day one of the four-day Australia Pacific Cup (AP Cup) beginning January 30, 2020, the Olympic-bound Team Italy women’s softball squad (ranked #9) views AP Cup Opening Day as an opportunity to shoot up the ladder in international rankings. Softball Australia and the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) have added even more significance to the six-country AP Cup by ensuring all competing nations in the competition are eligible for international ranking points.
Team Italy blasts off on Thursday, January 30, 2020 against Mexico at 4 pm and relaunches again at 7:30 pm when facing host Travelodge Aussie Spirit (ranked #7) at Blacktown International Sportspark in Sydney. The Italians return the following day on Friday, January 31 for a battle against Japan (ranked #2) at 1:30 pm and a clash against New Zealand (ranked #11) at 6:30 pm. Team Italy kicks off the Saturday, February 1 morning opener at 11 am against Chinese Taipei (ranked #6) before coming back for a 4 pm contest with the Australia All-Stars.
The AP Cup playoffs begin on Sunday, February 2 at 9 am with the grand final scheduled in the afternoon at 1:30 pm. The 2020 AP Cup will be immediately followed by the second annual Summer Slam – Fully Loaded Softball from February 3-5, 2020 at Blacktown International Sportspark. The Summer Slam – Fully Loaded Softball is an exciting, fast-paced take on the traditional game with only three innings, shorter fences, and bases loaded every inning. Six teams will be made up of a mix of international softball all-stars who will play together during the course of the three-day competition. To purchase tickets for the AP Cup, click HERE. For tickets to the Summer Slam – Fully Loaded Softball, click HERE. Forza #Italia!
by Roberto Angotti