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RugbyDump
Thursday Jun 2, 2022

South African sides added to European competitions

Rugby union has seen a big shuffle in competitions over recent times, with Argentina joining The Rugby Championship and Italian and South African sides being introduced into the United Rugby Championship.

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The most recent development has just been announced, and it involves 5 South African sides joining the European Heineken and Challenge cups next season.

This will make both competitions inter-hemisphere and create a whole new dynamic for world rugby.

The Stormers from Cape Town, Pretoria’s Bulls, and the Sharks from Durban will be inducted into the Champions Cup, as leading qualifiers from the United Rugby Championship.

The Lions from Johannesburg will be invited to participate in the Challenge Cup, as will the Cheetahs based in Bloemfontein.

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View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by EPCR Challenge Cup (@epcr_challengecup)

EPCR Chairman Dominic McKay had the following to say:

“We are delighted to confirm that the South African clubs will be part of our expanded tournaments from the beginning of next season.

“The Stormers, Bulls, Sharks and Lions will all bring hugely exciting southern hemisphere rugby, well-known world-class players and broad new audiences into our tournaments, and we are pleased to welcome the Cheetahs into the EPCR Challenge Cup.

“The steps we have taken ensure that we can further develop the tournaments as the pinnacle of global club rugby.

“This is a crucial step forward in bringing to life our vision of growing the game and our tournaments, continuing to deliver strong returns for our leagues and creating an ever-higher standard of mouth-watering matches for our fans.”

The European competitions have been dominated by French sides in recent times, with only the likes of Leinster really looking like they could challenge for a trophy. So with the introduction of the South African sides, it could be very interesting to see how they fare.

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