Thursday 16 February 2017 (Melbourne, Victoria) - The Battle begins when the Melbourne Vixens host Magpies Netball in the inaugural round of Suncorp Super Netball on Saturday evening.
The stage is set for an intense match, with the cross-town rivals facing-off for the first time.
With the experienced Magpies side dubbed the team to beat in 2017, the youthful Vixens side - with seven members of their 10-player list under the age of 24 - will face a tough test in the first game.
However, the young team will benefit by having a settled line-up, retaining the bulk of their 2016 playing group.
Whilst the two Victorian teams do battle on court, there will be tantalising match-ups to observe, with two 2016 Vixens players now donning the dress for the Magpies.
The two captains and former teammates Kate Moloney and Madison Robinson will go head-to-head in the midcourt, whilst former Vixen Alice Teague-Neeld will take-on Australian Diamonds defender Jo Weston, in the shooting circle.
It is the Vixens shooting end that will perhaps provide the most interesting match-up of the game. That between Vixens’ dynamic shooter Mwai Kumwenda and fierce Magpies defender Sharni Layton.
Kumwenda will team-up with goal attack Tegan Philip, who is playing her first official game after rupturing her ACL last year.
Philip will be an integral part of the Vixens’ attacking end, being the most experienced player on the list and forming an impressive shooting pair with Kumwenda throughout the pre-season.
The Battle will take place this Saturday night at Melbourne’s Hisense Arena in the inaugural round of Suncorp Super Netball.
Round 1, Saturday 18 February: Vixens v Magpies, Melbourne
Round 2, Sunday 26 February: Lightning v Vixens, Sunshine Coast
Round 3, Saturday 4 March: Vixens v Swifts, Melbourne
Round 4, Saturday 11 March: Vixens v Fever, Melbourne
Round 5, Saturday 18 March: Firebirds v Vixens, Brisbane
Round 6, Saturday 25 March: Vixens v Giants, Melbourne
Round 7, Sunday 2 April: Magpies v Vixens, Melbourne
Round 8, Saturday 8 April: Thunderbirds v Vixens, Adelaide
Round 9, Sunday 23 April: Swifts v Vixens, Sydney
Round 10, Friday 28 April: Vixens v Lightning, Melbourne
Round 11, Saturday 6 May: Vixens v Firebirds, Melbourne
Round 12, Sunday 14 May: Giants v Vixens, Canberra
Round 13, Sunday 21 May: Vixens v Thunderbirds, Melbourne
Round 14, Saturday 27 May: Fever v Vixens, Perth
Live on 9Gem and Telstra TV, beginning at 7pm, Saturday 18 February.
Follow the team's results on Twitter by following @MelbourneVixens and using #TheBattle, #VIXvMAG, #VixensFamily and #WeMakeChampions.