SANZAAR

Last updated

SANZAAR
SANZAAR logo.svg
Formation1996;25 years ago (1996)
Type International sport federation
Headquarters Sydney, Australia
Coordinates 33°53′28″S151°15′00″E / 33.89111°S 151.25000°E / -33.89111; 151.25000
CEO
Brendan Morris
Website sanzarrugby.com

SANZAAR (South Africa, New Zealand, Australia and Argentina Rugby; previously known as SANZAR) is the body which oversees Super Rugby and The Rugby Championship competitions in rugby union. SANZAAR meets annually and is composed of the CEOs from its member unions.

Contents

It was formed as SANZAR in 1996 as a joint venture of the South African Rugby Union, the New Zealand Rugby Union and the Australian Rugby Union. From the 2016 season, its name was changed to SANZAAR following the inclusion of the Argentine Rugby Union as a full member of the organisation. [1]

History

Tri-Nations and Super 12: 1996

SANZAR logo up to 2015. SANZAR logo old.svg
SANZAR logo up to 2015.

SANZAR was formed in 1995, shortly after rugby's move to professionalism, to counter the threat of Australia's Super League, a new rugby league competition that offered large salaries to players. [2]

SANZAR proposed the Super 12, an annual provincial competition with teams from all three countries, and the Tri Nations Series, an annual competition between each country's Test teams. This concept was developed by Queensland Rugby Union CEO Terry Doyle, [3] [4] New South Wales Rugby Union CEO David Moffett and Australian Rugby Union CEO Bruce Hayman. [5] Rian Oberholzer was the first CEO of SANZAR.

SANZAR's proposals were under serious threat from the World Rugby Corporation (WRC), a company formed by lawyer Geoff Levy and former Wallaby player Ross Turnbull. Both wanted a professional worldwide rugby competition funded by Kerry Packer, who had already developed professional cricket. At one point the WRC had a majority of the All Blacks and Wallaby teams signed up to their competition. However, the South African Rugby Union told the Springboks players that they would never play for their country again if they committed to the WRC, and they remained with the SARU. Most of the All Blacks then followed them, and finally the Wallabies did too.

To fund the competitions, SANZAR looked to News Limited, who was the Super League's broadcaster, eventually being offered $555 million over 10 years for worldwide television rights.

Expansion to Super 14

In 2002, a proposal to expand the Super 12 to fourteen teams, supported by Australia and South Africa, was vetoed by the New Zealand Rugby Union. [6] This led to calls for the Australian and South African teams to withdraw from the competition, [6] [7] but the partnership continued and the issue was revisited before the end of the original 10-year broadcasting deal.

For the 2006 season, SANZAR agreed to expand the Super 12 competition with two new teams and to increase the number of Test matches played in the Tri-Nations. [8] Licences were granted for franchises based in Bloemfontein and Perth, [9] [10] creating the Cheetahs and Western Force teams for the expanded Super 14 competition.

The SANZAR partnership was tested in 2007 after New Zealand removed its top 22 players from the Super 14 competition, [11] and South Africa's removal of players from the Tri-Nations prompted calls for the Australian Rugby Union to cancel future matches against the Springboks. [12]

Potential South African departure

In 2009 there emerged concerns that South African Rugby Union might opt to break away from the alliance over a dispute about the proposed plan to expand Super Rugby to fifteen teams in 2011, voicing its support for the concept generally but disagreeing over its length and format. On 6 May 2009, however, ARU Chief Executive John O'Neill warned that the South Africans would be the real losers, missing out altogether and potentially losing players if they went ahead with the split. "The joint venture must remain intact", he urged. "I have dealt with the South Africans for years in business and sport. Part of their DNA is to take it to the brink. There's a moment when they will realise they have taken it far enough." [13] On 20 May 2009, SANZAR announced it had reached agreement on a new deal involving all three nations beginning in the 2011 season. [14]

The Rugby Championship and Super Rugby: 2011

The deal for 2011 to 2015 included: [14]

Super Rugby to Argentina and Japan: 2016

Further expansion was agreed in 2015 to include the Argentine Rugby Union as a full member of SANZAAR from 2016. [15] Three additional teams were included in the Super Rugby competition, one each from South Africa, Argentina and Japan. Two regional groupings were formed: the Australasian Group, with five teams in the Australian Conference and five teams in the New Zealand Conference and the South African Group, with six South African teams, one Argentinean team and one Japanese team split into a four-team Africa 1 Conference a four-team Africa 2 Conference. [16]

While a Japanese team has been invited to participate in the Super Rugby competition from 2016, Japan was never a member of SANZAAR. 2020 was also the Sunwolves team's last year in Super Rugby competition.

In 2017, the Australian Rugby Union was rebranded to Rugby Australia. [17]

See also

Member unions

Related Research Articles

The Rugby Championship

The Rugby Championship is an international rugby union competition contested annually by Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa. These are the four highest ranked national teams in the Southern Hemisphere, the Six Nations is a similar tournament in the Northern Hemisphere.

Super Rugby Rugby union club competition

Super Rugby is a professional men's rugby union club competition currently involving teams from Australia and New Zealand. It previously included teams from South Africa, Argentina, and Japan. Building on various Southern Hemisphere competitions dating back to the South Pacific Championship in 1986, with teams from a number of southern nations, the Super Rugby started as the Super 12 in the 1996 season with 12 teams from 3 nations: Australia, New Zealand, South Africa. The Super 12 was established by SANZAR after the sport became professional in 1995. At its peak the tournament featured the top players from nations representing 16 of the 24 top-three finishes in the history of the Rugby World Cup, and is widely regarded as rugby union's strongest provincial competition. After the coronavirus pandemic forced the competition to split into three, the reformed competition in 2021 and beyond will only include Australian and New Zealand clubs.

Australia national rugby union team

The Australia national rugby union team, nicknamed the Wallabies, is the representative national team in the sport of rugby union for the nation of Australia. The team first played at Sydney in 1899, winning their first test match against the touring British Isles team.

The 2006 Tri Nations Series was the 10th Tri Nations Series, an annual rugby union competition between the national teams of Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. New Zealand won the competition with three rounds still to play after their victory over Australia on 19 August, their 21st consecutive home win.

Tri Nations Series champions

Tri Nations Series champion is the title given to the rugby union nation that finishes at the top of competition table of the annual Tri Nations Series. The Bledisloe Cup, an Australian-New Zealand trophy is also awarded within the series.

The 2007 Tri Nations Series was an annual rugby union competition between the national teams of Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. The series began in South Africa on 16 June, with a Test between South Africa and Australia at Newlands, Cape Town and ended on 21 July in Eden Park, Auckland with a Test between New Zealand and Australia. The winners, for the third consecutive year, were New Zealand.

The 2008 Tri Nations Series was the thirteenth annual Tri Nations competition between the national rugby union teams of New Zealand, Australia and South Africa. The All Blacks won the series on 13 September 2008 after defeating Australia in the last match of the series.

2010 Tri Nations Series

The 2010 Tri Nations Series was the 15th annual Tri Nations series between the national rugby union teams of New Zealand, Australia and South Africa.

2011 Tri Nations Series

The 2011 Tri Nations Series was the sixteenth annual Tri Nations rugby union series between the national rugby union teams of New Zealand, Australia and South Africa, respectively nicknamed the All Blacks, Wallabies and Springboks. It was also the last series in which only these three teams participated. In 2012, Argentina's Pumas joined this competition, which was rebranded as The Rugby Championship. This made this series the last under the Tri Nations name until 2020, when South Africa withdrew due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 2016 Super Rugby season was the 21st season of Super Rugby and the first season featuring an expanded 18-team format. It was also the first season that teams outside Australia, New Zealand and South Africa featured, with the Jaguares from Argentina and the Sunwolves from Japan taking part. This season also saw the return of the Kings, who competed just once before, in the 2013 Super Rugby season. The round-robin games took place every weekend from 26 February to 16 July 2016, followed by the finals series at the end of July and culminating in the final on 6 August.

Pieter Willem Gabriel Rossouw is a former South African rugby player and current coach. Rossouw played wing for Western Province in the Currie Cup and the Stormers in the Super Rugby competition. He played a total of 43 times for the Springboks, making him one of the most capped Springbok wingers after South Africa's readmission to international rugby. He was also one of South Africa's most prolific try-scoring wingers, post-isolation, with only Breyton Paulse(26) and Bryan Habana(53) scoring more tries. He is 7th on the all-time try-scoring list for the Springboks. Rossouw is currently the backline coach of the Bulls in Super rugby and the Blue Bulls in the Currie Cup. He was known as "Slaptjips", apparently because the sight of his running legs was like potato chips slapping together. Pieter is the older brother of Chris Rossouw, who played flyhalf for Western Province and the Free State Cheetahs.

Jaguares (Super Rugby)

The Jaguares is an Argentinian professional rugby union team based in Buenos Aires, Argentina. They were founded in 2015 and are the first Argentinian team to play in SANZAAR's Super Rugby competition, participating from the 2016 Super Rugby season onwards. They were the runners up during the 2019 Super Rugby season, losing to the Crusaders 19–3 in the Super Rugby Final, played on July 6, 2019. They participated in Super Rugby until the end of the 2020 Super Rugby season, before they departed the competition having not been named in any of the regionalised formats for the 2021 Super Rugby season.

Sunwolves Japanese Super Rugby team

The Sunwolves – lastly known as the HITO-Communications Sunwolves for sponsorship reasons – were a professional rugby union team and Japan's representative team in SANZAAR's international Super Rugby competition. The team was based in Tokyo, Japan, but also played some home matches in Singapore. They made their debut in Super Rugby in 2016. In March 2019, it was announced that 2020 would be the final season for the Sunwolves, after failing to negotiate a contract due to financial considerations.

The 2015 Super Rugby Final, was played between the Hurricanes and the Highlanders. It was the 20th final in the Super Rugby competition's history and the fifth under the expanded 15-team format. This was the first Super Rugby final between two New Zealand teams since 2006 when the Hurricanes were beaten by the Crusaders.

The 2016 Rugby Championship was the fifth edition of the expanded annual southern hemisphere Rugby Championship, featuring Argentina, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. The competition is operated by SANZAAR, a joint venture of the four countries' national unions. New Zealand won their first four matches with bonus points to gain an unassailable lead, winning the title for the fourth time.

The 2017 Super Rugby season was the 22nd season of Super Rugby, an annual rugby union competition organised by SANZAAR between teams from Argentina, Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa. It was the second season featuring an expanded 18-team format, following the competition's expansion from 15 teams prior to the 2016 season.

2017 Rugby Championship

The 2017 Rugby Championship was the sixth edition of the expanded annual southern hemisphere Rugby Championship, featuring Argentina, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. The competition is operated by SANZAAR, a joint venture of the four countries' national unions.

The 2019 Rugby Championship was the eighth edition of the annual southern hemisphere Rugby Championship, featuring Argentina, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. The competition is operated by SANZAAR, a joint venture of the four countries' national unions.

2020 Tri Nations Series 2020 Tri Nations Series

The 2020 Tri Nations Series was the seventeenth edition of the annual southern hemisphere competition, involving Argentina, Australia and New Zealand. On 16 October 2020, 2019 Rugby Championship winners and 2019 Rugby World Cup champions South Africa confirmed their withdrawal from the originally planned 2020 Rugby Championship due to South African government travel restrictions, player welfare and safety concerns related to COVID-19. This meant that the competition temporarily returned to its previous Tri-Nations format - played across six weekends with each team playing each other twice.

References

  1. "SANZAR changes name to SANZAAR". Sport24. 2 February 2016. Retrieved 2 February 2016.
  2. Howitt, Bob (2005). SANZAR Saga: Ten Years of Super 12 and Tri-Nations Rugby. Harper Collins Publishers. ISBN   1-86950-566-2.
  3. Oberdardt, Mark (13 September 2011). "Former rugby union chief Terry Doyle dies, aged 65". The Courier-Mail. Archived from the original on 20 April 2019. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  4. Smith, Wayne (14 September 2011). "Visionary's legacy a rugby bonus". The Australian. Archived from the original on 20 April 2019. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  5. Fitzsimons, Peter (21 February 2002). "To rugby, a Super baby ..." The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 4 February 2016. Retrieved 4 February 2016.
  6. 1 2 "Oberholzer slams NZRFU". ESPN Scrum. 19 February 2002. Archived from the original on 4 February 2016. Retrieved 4 February 2016.
  7. "Call for Australia to ditch Super 12". ESPN Scrum. 21 February 2002. Archived from the original on 4 February 2016. Retrieved 4 February 2016.
  8. "Super 12 and Tri Nations expansion confirmed". ESPN Scrum. 6 September 2004. Archived from the original on 28 October 2015. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  9. "Central Cheetahs". CRFU. Archived from the original on 20 March 2007. Retrieved 2 February 2007.
  10. "Perth gets the green light". ESPN Scrum. 10 December 2004. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  11. Marshallsea, Trevor (5 February 2007). "Experts downgrade rugby's Super rating". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  12. Harris, Bret; Smith, Wayne (26 June 2007). "Wallabies want Boks kicked out". The Australian. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  13. Linden, Julian (6 May 2009). "Rugby-Australia warns South Africa not to split SANZAR". Reuters. Retrieved 3 October 2011. The joint venture must remain intact," O'Neill said. "I have dealt with the South Africans for years in business and sport. Part of their DNA is to take it to the brink. "There's a moment when they will realise they have taken it far enough.
  14. 1 2 "Super rugby expansion plans revealed" (Press release). SANZAR. 20 May 2009. Retrieved 5 June 2009.
  15. Stoney, Emma (17 April 2015). "Super Rugby Faces a Major Overhaul". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 22 April 2015. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  16. "Outline of the Super Rugby competition structure" (PDF). All Blacks. 1 May 2014. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  17. "Australian Rugby kicks off new era as Rugby Australia". web.archive.org. 27 October 2017. Retrieved 3 September 2020.