Country rivals to clash at the QEO

Bendigo will host Ballarat at the QEO in the 2017 AFL Victoria Community Championships.

BFNL midfielder Lee Coghlan gets a kick away against Ballarat in 2015.

BFNL midfielder Lee Coghlan gets a kick away against Ballarat in 2015.

Bendigo’s win over Gippsland this year lifted the league to 10th on the AFL Victoria Community Championships rankings.

Ballarat lost by three points to the Western Region Football League to slip to ninth place.

The 2017 Ballarat versus Bendigo game will be the fifth time since 2007 the country rivals have met at inter-league level.

Bendigo, coached by Brett Fitzpatrick, has only won one of the four previous meetings, with the past three battles all played in Ballarat.

The Heathcote District Football Netball League and the North Central Football Netball League will also host inter-league matches in 2017.

The 20th ranked Heathcote league will host the 19th ranked Central Murray at a venue yet to be determined.

North Central, seeded 22nd, is at home to Geelong District.

The 27th ranked Maryborough Castlemaine District Football Netball League faces a long road trip to play the Warrnambool District.

The Loddon Valley FNL is not in the top 32 rankings in the championships.

All games will be played on the weekend of May 13-14.

2017 AFL Victoria Community Championships fixture – Geelong FNL v MPNFL at Geelong; Eastern FL v Essendon DFL at Eastern; Northern FL v Western RFL at Northern; Goulburn Valley FL v Ovens & Murray FL at  OMFL; Ballarat FNL v Bendigo FNL at Bendigo; Hampden FNL v South East FNL at South East; Gippsland v AFL Yarra Ranges at Yarra Ranges;  Murray FL v Wimmera FNL at Murray;  Bellarine FNL v Sunraysia FNL at Bellarine; Central Murray FNL v Heathcote DFL at Heathcote; Geelong DFL v North Central FL at North Central; Southern FL v Central Highlands FL at Southern; West Gippsland FNL v Riddell DFNL at Riddell; MCDFNL v Warrnambool DFNL at Warrnambool; Horsham DFNL v Colac DFNL at Horsham; Kyabram DFNL v Golden Rivers FL at Golden Rivers.