AFTER a successful 2019 ANZ Premiership season the draw for the 2020 season, starting on March 15, was announced today with a number of key scheduling changes highlighted thanks to High Performance and Competitions reviews and audience feedback. The 2020 season will see a combined 45 matched played out over 16 rounds, starting March and running through to the end of June.
In a major change from previous seasons, two matches per week will play on a Sunday while the final match of the round will take place on Monday evenings. This structure will stay in place all season, with no mid-week games and teams only playing one match per week. The only breaks from this structure during the season will be in Round 3, with a Saturday match thrown in the mix; over the Easter long weekend in April, seeing only one Sunday match played for Round 5, with the additional two matches made up in Round 11. All six sides will play each other three times during the season, with matches switched up to enable each team to host seven or eight home games throughout the season.
With plenty of excitement heading into the 2020 season, there are a number of matches to watch out for. The season opener will see Mainland Tactix take on Central Pulse on Sunday, March 15 at 4:10pm, with the final match of the season played out between Southern Steel and Bay of Plenty Magic on Monday, June 29 ahead of two rounds of finals, as per the 2019 season. Round 3 will see a Grand Final rematch between Northern Stars and Central Pulse, with the latter holding the trophy in 2019. It will be an interesting match thanks a number of key player moves across both sides with retiring stars and new signings alike. Round 5’s single match will see Mainland Tactix host Bay of Plenty Magic on April 12, with a combined eight players set to play for their respective new sides in 2020.
All matches will be televised live in New Zealand and via livestream thanks to Sky Sport and the league’s partnership with Sky Television.