The Bendigo Spirit are up against a tough start to their 2012/13 Womens National Basketball League campaign.
The Spirit play each of the top three sides from last year in the first two rounds, and their first four games are all played away from home.
Bendigo, whose first home game is in round three, will travel interstate to play 2011/12 minor premiers Adelaide and West Coast in round one, on October 5 and 6, respectively.
The game against the West Coast Waves will see the Spirit girls face a former teammate in Deanna Smith, who signed with the Perth based club in April.
In round two Bendigo play away from home on consecutive days against last year’s runners-up in Bulleen, and the team that topped the Boomers in last year's grand final, Dandenong.
Every team will have a bye once this season, caused by the departure of the Australian Institute of Sport team from the competition, with the Spirit sitting out round five.
Each team will play 24 home-and-away games, with all 12 Spirit home games played at the Bendigo Stadium.
The 2012/13 home-and-away season runs from October 5 - February 16, with Bendigo hosting Townsville in the final game of the regular season at the Bendigo Stadium.