Thursday Feb 15, 2018 New and improved Super Rugby format explained ahead of opening weekend

New and improved Super Rugby format explained ahead of opening weekend
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The much anticipated new look Super Rugby season kicks off in Cape Town on Saturday, as 2018 sees a reduction in the tournament from 18 teams back down to 15. In round one, the Stormers host the Jaguares and the Lions host the Sharks. 

The new format of the tournament is likely to cause some confusion, so the video below explains exactly how the competition is laid out, giving fans a better understanding of what to expect.

While the tournament features the best domestic teams from South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, Argentina and Japan, matches will be hosted in seven different countries this year, and 19 different cities.

Suva in Fiji will host a New Zealand derby match when the Highlanders play the Chiefs in June, while in Asia the Sunwolves will play matches at Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium in Tokyo plus the Singapore National Stadium.

“It is great to actually kick-off and have Super Rugby action back on the rugby field following the re-structure of the tournament last year,” said SANZAAR CEO Andy Marinos.

“The focus is very much on South Africa this weekend with two matches in the South African Conference. Then in week two of Super Rugby we will see some further great action with two New Zealand derbies and an Australian derby as the Australian and New Zealand Conferences begin their campaigns.”

At the completion of the 120-match regular season eight teams will qualify for the finals series and will be given a seeding of 1 to 8 for the quarter-finals. The three conference winners will be seeded 1 to 3 based on final tournament points and will host quarter-finals.

Seeds 4 to 8 will be the five non-Conference winning teams with the next best number of Super Rugby competition points regardless of Conference. Seed 4 will host the remaining quarter-final.

WEEK 1

Sat 17 February: Stormers v Jaguares – DHL Newlands, Cape Town (15:05 local)
Sat 17 February: Lions v Sharks – Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg (17:15 local)

The New Zealand and Australian Conferences start their campaigns in Week 2.

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6 Comments

  •  dancarter
    dancarter

    The difficult bit is distracting the forwards while the catering trolley goes past.

    Reply
  •  drg
    drg

    More than you'd think ;)

    Reply
  •  10stonenumber10
    10stonenumber10

    Have you heard of a pilot, steward, or stewardess training all week, playing 80 minutes, then folding themselves into a seat designed for someone 30-50% smaller, all the while breathing recirculated lower oxygen air containing the respiratory bacteria of 100 other people, in an atmospheric pressure that increases local and general swelling by 15 to 30%?

    Reply
  •  dancarter
    dancarter

    Should be a good opportunity for some of the Australian sides considering a quarter of their games will be against the Rebels and Sunwolves. The new format is good though, a lot easier to follow. It was a bit of a farce last year. The Brumbies got 34 points last year, which placed them 10th out of 18 teams overall, but they finished 4th because they topped their conference. On the other hand the Blues got 37 points and missed out on the play offs entirely.

    Reply
  •  drg
    drg

    You've heard of pilots, stewards and stewardesses right?

    Reply
  •  10stonenumber10
    10stonenumber10

    Crazy schedule. That much air travel can't be good for the health

    Reply

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New and improved Super Rugby format explained ahead of opening weekend | RugbyDump