Can the Aces finally break ‘that’ hoodoo?

OF all the streaks and lopsided matchups one ABL hoodoo looms large heading into round three of the 2015/16 season.

The Melbourne Aces hit the road for the first time in the sixth season of the relaunched league looking to claim an historic away series victory.

Be it a three, four or five-game matchup the Aces have never managed to win an away series.

That’s right, Melbourne are 0-28 in series on the road through five years.

There have been 2-0 series leads that have been blown, and demoralising sweeps.

But now, against an Adelaide Bite outfit off to a rocky 1-7 start but opening its home slate, the Aces might have  their best chance.

Melbourne won just five games away from home last season, going 5-17 (.227), but it was incredibly not its worst season on the road.

In 2012/13 the Aces went .174, winning four of 19 away.

 

ABL 2015 RD03 MEL road woes-01-01

 

This weekend’s venue, Norwood Oval, has been one of the hardest places for Melbourne to win.

The Aces are 4-16 at the Bite’s home, with only a worse record at Sydney’s Blacktown base (3-13, .188).

Last season was a tough year for Melbourne as it finished last in the ABL.

But looking at the statistics they were a significantly better side at Melbourne Ballpark.

The Aces averaged only 3.6 runs away compared to 4.3 at home, and allowed 6.1 per game on the road in contrast to 5.0 at Melbourne Ballpark.

In 24 home games, Melbourne went 10-14 and was outscored by 17 runs. It was outscored by 55 on the road.

The Aces pitching stuff found the going tough away, finishing the season with an ERA of 6.19 compared to 4.16 at home.

Left-hander Matt Wilson had a 9.60 ERA away (2.50 at Melbourne Ballpark) and Jeramy Young 9.95 to 2.89.

Its offence also fared worse on the road, hitting .219 compared to .253.

Of current Aces Brad Harman led the way on the road, batting .276 (compared to .195 at home) and Ryan Dale also hit better on the road than at Melbourne Ballpark.

For Melbourne to become a post-season threat it must overcome its inability to win on the road.

After coming out of its season-opening eight-game homestand with a 3-5 record winning on the road becomes even more important.

 

 

The Aces at Bite series starts on Friday night and continues with a double-header on Saturday.

The four-game series wraps up on Sunday.

Melbourne travels to Adelaide and Sydney – its worst two away venues – twice this season.

 

Why do you think the Melbourne Aces struggle so much on the road?

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