|Upcoming season or competition:|
Super Rugby Logo introduced for 2011
|Formerly||Super 12 (1996–2005)|
Super 14 (2006–2010)
|Divisions|| Australasian |
|No. of teams||15|
|Country|| Argentina |
|Crusaders (9th title)|
|Most titles||Crusaders (9 titles)|
|TV partner(s)|| ESPN |
|Sponsor(s)|| Investec |
| Currie Cup |
Mitre 10 Cup
National Rugby Championship
Nacional de Clubes
Super Rugby is a professional men's rugby union competition involving teams from Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa 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, Super Rugby started as the Super 12 in the 1996 season with 12 teams from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. The Super 12 was established by SANZAR after the sport became professional in 1995.
Rugby union, commonly known in most of the world simply as rugby, is a contact team sport which originated in England in the first half of the 19th century. One of the two codes of rugby football, it is based on running with the ball in hand. In its most common form, a game is between two teams of 15 players using an oval-shaped ball on a rectangular field with H-shaped goalposts on each try line.
The South Pacific Championship was a rugby union competition that was introduced in 1986 and contested through to 1990. The competition featured six teams - three provinces from New Zealand; Auckland, Canterbury and Wellington, two Australian teams; Queensland and New South Wales, and one team representing Pacific Island rugby, Fiji.
The 1996 Super 12 season was the inaugural season of the Super 12, contested by teams from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. The season ran from February to May 1996, with each team playing all the others once. At the end of the regular season, the top four teams entered the playoff semifinals, with the first placed team playing the fourth and the second placed team playing the third. The winner of each semifinal qualified for the final, which was contested between the Auckland Blues and Natal Sharks, with the Blues winning 45 – 21 to win the first Super 12 title.
The name was changed to Super 14 with the addition of two teams for the 2006 season, and with expansion to 15 teams in the three countries for the 2011 season, the competition was rebranded as Super Rugby (with no number). In 2016 two new teams, the Jaguares from Argentina and Sunwolves from Japan, joined the competition, playing in two newly separated African groups.
The 2006 Super 14 season started on Friday 10 February 2006. The Grand Final was held on Saturday 27 May 2006. Super 14 is a provincial rugby union competition with 14 teams from New Zealand, Australia and South Africa. This season was the first of the expansion, which saw two new teams, the Western Force and the Cheetahs, join the Super 12/14. The addition of two new teams led to the name change from the Super 12. It was also the first year for a new Super 14 trophy.
The 2011 Super Rugby season was the first season of the new 15-team format for the Super Rugby competition, which involved teams from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. Including its past iterations as Super 12 and Super 14, this was the 16th season for the Southern Hemisphere's premier transnational club competition. The season kicked off in February 2011, with pre-season matches held from mid-January. It finished in early July to allow players a recovery period for the 2011 Rugby World Cup to be held in September and October; in future non-World Cup years, the competition will extend into August.
In 2018, the competition underwent another change in format, this time dropping two teams (the Cheetahs and Kings) from the South African conference, and one (Western Force) from the Australian conference. This left the competition with 15 teams.
The competition has been dominated by New Zealand teams, who have won 16 times in 23 years. The Crusaders have won most often, with nine titles.
The Crusaders are a New Zealand professional rugby union team based in Christchurch, who compete in the Super Rugby competition. They have won 9 titles.
SANZAAR is the body that administers Super Rugby, and has the Australian, New Zealand, South African and Argentine rugby unions as its sole members. SANZAAR also runs the Rugby Championship tournament that is contested by Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa following the conclusion of the Super Rugby tournament; the Tri-Nations preceded the Rugby Championship before Argentina joined the competition. The organisation was formed in 1995 to establish and run the Super 12, and Tri-Nations Tournament.
SANZAAR is the body which operates Super Rugby and The Rugby Championship competitions in Rugby Union. SANZAAR meets annually and is composed of the CEOs from its member unions.
The South African Rugby Union (SARU) is the governing body for rugby union in South Africa and is affiliated to World Rugby. It was established in 1992 as the South African Rugby Football Union, from the merger of the South African Rugby Board and the non-racial South African Rugby Union (SACOS), and took up its current name in 2005.
The Argentine Rugby Union is the governing body for rugby union in Argentina. It is a member of World Rugby with a seat on that body's Executive Council.
Prior to 2011, Super Rugby was a round-robin competition where each team played with every other team once; a team had six or seven home games, and six or seven away games each. The winner received four competition points; if the game was a draw two points were awarded to each team. The Rugby union bonus points system was also used, where any team scoring four or more tries, and/or losing by seven points or less, receives an extra competition point. In 2016, the try bonus changed. A team now has to score three more tries than their opponents. The top four teams at the end of the round-robin phase then played semi-finals – the first placed team hosting the fourth placed team, and the second placed team hosting the third placed team. weekends with each team receiving one bye.The two winners then played the final at the home ground of the top surviving seed. There were 91 regular season games in total. Games were held over 14
A round-robin tournament is a competition in which each contestant meets all other contestants in turn. A round-robin contrasts with an elimination tournament, in which participants are eliminated after a certain number of losses.
Bonus points are group tournament points awarded in rugby union tournaments in addition to the standard points for winning or drawing a match. Bonus points were implemented in order to encourage attacking play throughout a match, to discourage repetitive goal-kicking, and to reward teams for "coming close" in losing efforts.
A bye in sports refers to organizers scheduling a competitor to not participate in a given round of competition, due to one of several circumstances.
From 2011 – 2015 the format changed, with each country forming its own conference. Each team within a conference played each of the other teams in its conference twice, once at home and once away. Each team then played four out of the five teams from each of the other conferences once. Competition points were awarded on a similar basis as before. The format of the finals also changed; it involved six teams: the top team in each of the three conferences plus the three next teams with the highest total number of points, regardless of conference. The four lower ranking teams were paired in two sudden death games; the winners of those two games each played one of the two top ranked teams (which received a bye at the start of the finals). Those winners played for the championship.
An athletic conference is a collection of sports teams, playing competitively against each other at the professional, collegiate, or high school level. In many cases conferences are subdivided into smaller divisions, with the best teams competing at successively higher levels. Conferences often, but not always, include teams from a common geographic region.
For the 2016 and 2017 seasons the format changed again, with three more teams joining, one each from Argentina, Japan and South Africa. There were four conferences, with Africa getting two conferences. The finals had eight teams with each conference winner getting a home quarter final. They were joined by four wild card teams, three from the Australasian group and one from the South African group.
From 2018 season the format has changed again, with two South African teams and an Australian team being dropped. There are three conferences, one of the five New Zealand teams, a South African one to include Argentina's team and an Australasian one including Japan's team.
Before 1996, a number of transnational competitions involving regional and provincial rugby union teams had taken shape in the southern hemisphere. The earliest of these was the South Pacific Championship, which was launched in 1986 and continued until 1990.
After the demise of the South Pacific Championship, with no tournament played in 1991, the competition was relaunched as the Super 6 in 1992. The original Super 6 competition consisted of three provincial teams from New Zealand: Auckland, Canterbury, Wellington; along with two Australian state teams: Queensland and New South Wales; and also the Fiji national team.
In 1993, the Super Six competition was revamped and expanded into the Super 10 tournament. With South Africa being readmitted into international sport following the dismantling of apartheid, there was an opportunity to launch an expanded competition which would also feature South Africa's top provincial teams. The inaugural competition featured the following teams: Waikato, Auckland, Otago and North Harbour (New Zealand); Natal, Transvaal and Northern Transvaal (South Africa); Queensland and New South Wales (Australia) and Western Samoa (Pacific Tri-Nations winner). The Super 10 was won by Transvaal (South Africa) in 1993, and by Queensland (Australia) in 1994 and 1995.
The official declaration of professionalism in rugby union in August 1995 led to a restructuring of the Super 10 competition. Following the success of the 1995 World Cup Australia, New Zealand and South Africa rugby boards formed SANZAR (South African, New Zealand and Australian Rugby) to administer an annual 12-team provincial/franchise based competition pitting regional teams from the three nations against each other. In addition it was decided to hold an annual Tri-Nations Test Series between the three countries. A significant reason for the development of the Super 12 was the threat to rugby union from rival football code rugby league: part of the business model for the Foxtel pay TV network in Australia was to attract subscribers by offering an exclusive product (such as rugby union) which could not be seen on free-to-air broadcast television. By setting up the Super 12, the Unions had a product that was in demand from viewers, enabling them to sell a 10-year contract for exclusive television rights to News Corp for US$555 million, giving them both coverage and financial support to kickstart the new competition.
With significant sponsorship, and rugby turning a professional sport in 1995, the Super 12 competition successfully kicked off in 1996 with five New Zealand franchises, four South African provinces and three domestic Australian teams competing. New Zealand's dominance of the competition began in the first year when the Auckland Blues won the inaugural competition defeating South African side the Sharks 45 – 21 in a home final. The Blues would repeat the success of 1996 beating Australian side the ACT Brumbies 23 – 7 in the 1997 final.
The Blues then reached their third successive final in 1998 but went down to fellow countrymen the Canterbury Crusaders 13 – 20. This would mark the beginning of the Crusaders' three-year dominance as they went on to win the 1999 and 2000 finals over the Otago Highlanders and ACT Brumbies respectively. The 2001 season was the first in which no New Zealand franchise reached the final, being contested between the ACT Brumbies and Sharks with the Brumbies convincing winners, with a 36 – 6 scoreline.
The Crusaders won their 4th final in 2002 winning all 11 matches and missed out on their 5th in 2003 with a four-point loss to fellow countrymen the Blues. In 2004 the Brumbies took revenge on their 2000 final loss to the Crusaders defeating them 47 – 38 in front of a home crowd. The Crusaders would bounce back to win the 2005 final 35 – 25 against the Australian side the New South Wales Waratahs who reached their first ever final. This was the last year of the 12 team format.
From the early 2000s Australia had started to push for the inclusion of a fourth Australian team, and South Africa for another team from its country. There was also speculation of including a team from the South Pacific Island nations, such as Fiji; or a combined Pacific Islanders team from Fiji, Samoa, and Tonga. Argentina was also pushing for inclusion in the Super 12. In the early 2000s the provincial names from the New Zealand franchises were dropped, so, for example, the Canterbury Crusaders became The Crusaders. Also South Africa followed the New Zealand franchise model, where previously South African participation was decided by the previous year's Currie Cup placings.
SANZAR announced in December 2004 that a new five-year television deal had been signed that would cover 2006 to 2010, with News Corporation winning the rights for the UK, Australia and New Zealand, and SuperSport winning rights for South Africa. The contract was worth US$323 million over five years, a 16% annual increase compared to the previous deal. It covers international fixtures as well as the Super 14. SANZAR remained free to negotiate separate deals for other markets, such as France, Japan and the Americas.
The TriNations is the "cash cow" for the SANZAR partners as it provides nearly 60 per cent of the money from News Ltd.[ needs update ] The Super 14 made up about 30 per cent of the deal.[ citation needed ] Under the new deal, Australia and South Africa each got one extra team in the competition, and a third round of fixtures was added to the Tri Nations Series. The new Australian team in the competition was based in Perth and was named the Western Force.
The addition of the new South African team led to considerable controversy, including government involvement. Finally, the five teams for 2006 were confirmed to be the country's existing four teams plus the Cheetahs, which draws its players from the Free State and Northern Cape Provinces. For the 2007 season, the Southern Spears, based in Port Elizabeth, were originally intended to replace the lowest-finishing South African team from the 2006 competition. However, the existing South African Super 14 franchises opposed the plan, which was pushed through by controversial president of the South African Rugby Union, Brian van Rooyen. After van Rooyen was ousted as president, SARU announced that the Spears would not enter the competition.SARU investigated the viability of the Spears after discovering serious financial irregularities. A High Court of South Africa ruling stated that the Spears had a valid contract to compete in the Super 14 and Currie Cup. However, because of the organisation's financial and administrative troubles, in November 2006 a settlement was reached. The Spears abandoned their legal case, and will continue to exist, but not compete in the Super 14.
SANZAR rejected a proposal to split the Super 14 into two seven-team divisions, and decided to keep the competition in its traditional single-table format. Argentina and the Pacific Islands remained shut out of the competition.
The two new teams didn't perform all that well, the South African franchise the Cheetahs did the better of the two teams finishing 10th on the ladder notching up 5 season wins. The Australian franchise the Western Force only managed one victory and ended winning the wooden spoon as last placed 14th. The highlight for the Force was a 23-all draw against eventual champions the Crusaders, who defeated first-time finalists the Hurricanes 19–12.
During the 2007 season, 22 All Blacks missed the competition's first seven rounds as part of an All Black "conditioning programme" that was a part of the All Blacks' 2007 Rugby World Cup preparations, and every New Zealand franchise was without players for the first seven rounds.At the end of the regular season, for the first time since 1998, no Australian franchise had made the semi-finals. Although the Brumbies were strong and the Western Force experienced vast improvement, it was a poor season for the Queensland Reds and Waratahs who finished last and second last respectively. Also, the competition featured the first all-South African final as the Sharks and Bulls, who finished 1–2 on the season ladder, both won their respective semi-finals. The final, held in Durban, saw the visiting Bulls win 20–19.
During the time the competition was branded as the Super 14, only two teams won the tournament. The Crusaders winning the 2006 and 2008 tournaments; while the Bulls ended victorious in 2007, 2009, and 2010 respectively.
SANZAR unveiled in 2009 its model for an expanded season that would begin in 2011. This model was based around the original ARU proposal for three national conferences: each side were to have played the other four teams from their own country twice and the other ten teams once each; the season as to end with a six team finals series.
There were four major compromises, however, designed to accommodate certain wishes of each country, that somewhat complicated the model:
SANZAR announced in 2009 the addition of a fifth Australian team that would play in the expanded "Super Rugby" competition in 2011. The licence was awarded to Victoria, Australia, and the team's name announced as the Melbourne Rebels. The Australian start-up franchise was given the nod ahead of South Africa's Southern Kings.Brian Waldron, former CEO of the NRL club the Melbourne Storm, was confirmed as the new CEO of the Rebels on 11 January 2010, but resigned on 23 April after a salary cap breach was uncovered at the Storm.
In February 2012, SANZAR chief executive Greg Peters announced that the organisation was considering adding franchises in Argentina, Japan and the United States in 2016, the first year of SANZAR's next television contract. This was also the year that rugby sevens entered the Olympics, which contributed towards increased interest in the sport in many countries, including Japan and the US.
Australian sports broadcasting analyst Colin Smith noted that the addition of Japanese and American teams could result in a TV deal worth more than A$1 billion beyond 2020. Specifically, he stated, "You could have a deal comparable to the other major sports in Australia. Rugby is a college (university) sport in the US, if soccer can create its own league there and sell teams for $40 million, imagine what you could do in 10–12 years with rugby in that market." By comparison, the largest TV deal in Australian sport, that of the Australian Football League (Australian rules), is worth A$1.26 billion from 2012 to 2016. Even that figure was dwarfed by the TV contracts of the NFL, for which contracts at the time were worth more than US$4 billion annually.
Peters added that the conference-based structure was ideal for expanding the competition to new territories, either by adding new conferences or by adding teams to the current conferences. He also discussed the possibility that offshore Super Rugby teams could be a home for surplus players from the SANZAR countries, keeping them in the SANZAR fold and away from European clubs.
Prior to Super Rugby's broadcast contracts expiring after the 2015 season, SANZAR considered several alternatives for the competition's future organisation:
The last proposal, made by the SARU, was reportedly driven by internal union politics. With only five guaranteed places in Super Rugby but six active franchises, the bottom team in the South African Conference faced a promotion/relegation playoff with the sixth franchise for a place in the next season's competition. Australia and New Zealand warmed to the SARU proposal, as a trans-Tasman competition would potentially allow for more regional derbies, fewer time zone complications and less player travel.However, NZRU chief executive Steve Tew indicated that a competition that did not include South African teams was a commercial non-starter because of large broadcast revenues from that country and because the NZRU considered Super Rugby matches in South Africa to be critical for national team development.
SANZAR announced on 4 September 2013 that South Africa would be granted a sixth franchise starting in the 2016 season, negating the need for relegation play-offs involving the sixth South African franchise.SANZAR then announced on 20 November 2014 that Japan and Argentina would each be allocated a team from the 2016 season onwards.
In April 2017, SANZAAR confirmed the competition would reduce to 15 teams in 2018 with two South African and one Australian team to have their franchises withdrawn.South Africa would field only the following 4 teams: the Bulls, Lions, Sharks and Stormers, with the Cheetahs and Kings losing their spots. Both the Cheetahs and Kings were offered places to join the Pro 12, which became the Pro14 from the 2017/2018 season onwards. On 11 August 2017, Australia announced that the Western Force have lost their licence.
|New Zealand||South Africa|
|Brumbies||Canberra, Australian Capital Territory||Canberra Stadium||25,011||1996 (Super 12)|
|Rebels||Melbourne, Victoria||AAMI Park||30,050||2011|
|Reds||Brisbane, Queensland||Suncorp Stadium||52,500||1996 (Super 12)|
|Sunwolves||Chichibunomiya Rugby Stadium||27,188||2016|
|Waratahs||Sydney, New South Wales||Sydney Cricket Ground||44,000||1996 (Super 12)|
|Blues||Auckland, Auckland Region||Eden Park||50,000||1996 (Super 12)|
|Chiefs||Hamilton, Waikato||FMG Stadium Waikato||25,800||1996 (Super 12)|
|Crusaders||Christchurch, Canterbury||AMI Stadium||18,600||1996 (Super 12)|
|Highlanders||Dunedin, Otago||Forsyth Barr Stadium||30,748||1996 (Super 12)|
|Hurricanes||Wellington, Wellington Region||Westpac Stadium||34,500||1996 (Super 12)|
|Bulls||Pretoria, Gauteng||Loftus Versfeld Stadium||51,762||1996 (Super 12)|
|Jaguares||Estadio José Amalfitani||49,540||2016|
|Lions||Johannesburg, Gauteng||Emirates Airline Park||62,567||1996 (Super 12)|
|Sharks||Durban, KwaZulu-Natal||Kings Park Stadium||52,000||1996 (Super 12)|
|Stormers||Cape Town, Western Cape||Newlands Stadium||51,900||1996 (Super 12)|
|Year||No. of Teams||Final||Losing semi-finalists|
|Winners||Score||Runners-up||1st losing semi-finalists||2nd losing semi-finalists|
In the sortable table below, teams are ordered first by number of appearances, then by number of wins, and finally by season of first appearance. In the "Season(s)" column, bold years indicate winning seasons, and italic years indicate games not yet completed.
|13||9||4||.692||1998 , 1999 , 2000 , 2002 , 2003, 2004, 2005 , 2006 , 2008 , 2011, 2014, 2017 , 2018|
|6||2||4||.333||1997, 2000, 2001 , 2002, 2004 , 2013|
|4||3||1||.750||1996 , 1997 , 1998, 2003|
|4||0||4||.000||1996, 2001, 2007, 2012|
|3||3||0||1.000||2007 , 2009 , 2010|
|3||2||1||.667||2009, 2012 , 2013|
|3||1||2||.333||2005, 2008, 2014|
|3||1||2||.333||2006, 2015, 2016|
|3||0||3||.000||2016, 2017, 2018|
In the sortable table below, teams are ordered first by number of appearances, then by number of wins, and finally by season of first appearance. In the "Season(s)" column, bold years indicate winning seasons, and italic years indicate games not yet completed.
Since 2011, teams from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa have played in 3 separate conferences. With teams playing each team in their own conference twice (home and away) and in the other conferences playing four of the five teams. The winner of each conference is awarded a home final and their region specific conference trophy. In 2018, Japan's Sunwolves was added to the Australia Conference whereas Argentina's Jaguares was added to the Africa Conference.
|Year||Australia||New Zealand||South Africa|
2016–17 Group and Conference winners
In the 2016 and 2017 seasons, teams played in four separate conferences divided into two groups. The New Zealand and Australian conferences played in the Australasian Group, while two Africa conferences played in the African Group. Japan's Sunwolves and Argentina's Janguares played in the Africa 1 and Africa 2 conferences, respectively. The winners of each conference qualify for hosting the quarter finals, the third placed team in the African Group receives a wild card spot, and the third, fourth and fifth placed teams in the Australasian Group also receive wild card spots.
|Australia||New Zealand||Africa 1||Africa 2|
The four Australian teams playing in the competition are subjected to a $5.5 million salary cap for a squad of up to 40 players per Australian team.The Australian Rugby Union decided in 2011 to introduce the salary cap because of financial pressures. Originally starting in 2012 as a cap of A$4.1 million, it was later was raised to $4.5 million for the 2013 and 2014 seasons to take pressure off the teams' ability to recruit and retain players. The salary cap is a key component of the negotiation between the ARU and the Rugby Union Players Association over the collective bargaining agreement. The fact that the Australian teams in Super Rugby face a salary cap has been attributed as a factor that makes it more difficult for Australian teams to win the title.
The cap regulations have some small concessions:
New Zealand teams impose a cap on individual player salaries, but are not subjected to a team cap. South Africa imposes no cap of any sort.
There have been several iterations of the trophy awarded to the winner of the Super Rugby competitions.
The Super 14 trophy, unveiled in New Zealand ahead of the 2006 season, was made of sterling silver with the competition logo on a globe sitting atop of a four-sided twisted spiral.Jens Hansen Gold and Silversmith in Nelson, New Zealand hand-made the trophy which took over two months to complete.
On 30 June 2011, SANZAR unveiled the new trophy that will be presented to the winners of the Super Rugby final from 2011 and beyond, cm and a mass of 18 kilograms. The trophy was designed by Blue Sky Design of Sydney. The trophy was manufactured by Box and Dice Pty Ltd also based in Sydney.was crafted from solid stainless steel and polished to a mirror finish. It has a height of 65
SANZAR CEO Greg Peters said "The shape of the trophy is centred around three curved legs, each representing the Conferences involved in the Super Rugby competition . . . The champions trophy is the 'big one', and will become the ultimate symbol of Super Rugby supremacy in the years to come."
The colour on each leg corresponds to the Conferences with gold for Australia, black for New Zealand, and green for South Africa.
There are several other trophies contested during the competition; the Charles Anderson VC Memorial Cup between the Brumbies and Stormers, the Bob Templeton Cup between the Reds and Waratahs, the Ganbattle Trophy between Sunwolves and Rebels and the Gordon Hunter Memorial Trophy between the Blues and Highlanders. Every year the Super Rugby player of the year is awarded.
During the last season of the Super 12, Coast Design of Sydney was commissioned to design a new logo for the Super 14.The Super 14 logo broke away from the traditional shield formats, common to many sporting codes, and used Roman numerals (XIV), which is unique for sport in the region. The game's dynamism and speed are suggested by the orbiting football which has three distinct stitches, a subtle reference to the three countries of the tournament.
The Super Rugby logo dispenses with numbers, featuring a large blue "S" with a white rugby ball in the centre and "SupeRugbY" below the "S". The three stitches of the previous ball are retained.
Before the expansion to the Super 14, the Super 12 used a logo in the shape of a shield, which had the sponsors name at the top, and then the words "Rugby" and "Super 12". The lower half of the logo used three different coloured stripes, green, black and gold, the respective colours of the national teams of South Africa, New Zealand and Australia.
The naming rights for the competition are different in the five countries:
Each respective country competing in Super Rugby has a number of their own domestic leagues, which feed into Super Rugby teams.
South Africa actually used their Currie Cup teams as opposed to creating new teams during the earlier years of the Super 12. However, the Currie Cup is now the third tier of rugby in South Africa, below Test and Super Rugby; it is played after the Super Rugby season, and all unions are aligned to a Super Rugby team, though it is mainly the big six, Blue Bulls, Golden Lions, Sharks, Free State Cheetahs, Western Province and Eastern Province Elephants which contribute the most to the Super Rugby sides.
In New Zealand, the Mitre 10 Cup is the most prominent domestic competition below the Super Rugby, in which all the respective Unions are also aligned with Super Rugby sides.
In Australia, the National Rugby Championship (NRC) was launched in 2014. Several teams that played in the former Australian Rugby Championship in 2007,were revived for the NRC.
Argentina, like South Africa and New Zealand, has a national championship where several provincial unions compete, the Campeonato Argentino. Another national championship, but for clubs, is Nacional de Clubes.
Japan has a national club competition called Top League.
In Australia, pay TV station Fox Sports shows every match live and beginning in 2016, free-to-air station Network Ten started showing a full match replay every Sunday morning of the 'Match of the Round' featuring at least one Australian team. Network Ten will also show full match replays of all finals matches featuring Australian teams.
Super Rugby is broadcast on Supersport in South Africa and is simulcast terrestrially on M-Net. Sky Sport is the official broadcaster in New Zealand. Super Rugby is now broadcast in over 40 countries — in the UK on Sky Sports; in Spain it is broadcast by Digital+, and in the United States by ESPN3, which has confirmed all matches will be broadcast live or on demand. In Canada, TSN broadcasts all matches only on TSN GO, their online SD streaming platform.
|Fox Sports Australia|
|Setanta Sports Asia||Asia Pacific|
The Brumbies are an Australian professional rugby union football team competing in the Super Rugby. The team is based in Canberra, Australian Capital Territory (ACT) and named for the wild horses which inhabit the capital's hinterland. The team represents the ACT and southern New South Wales (NSW) regions.
The Bulls, for sponsorship reasons known as the Vodacom Bulls, are a South African rugby union team competing in the Super Rugby competition. They are based in Pretoria and play their home matches at Loftus Versfeld. Prior to 1998, the Bulls competed in the then-Super 12 as Northern Transvaal, as in those years South Africa was represented in the competition by its top four Currie Cup sides from the previous season, instead of the modern Super Rugby teams.
The Lions are a South African professional rugby union team from Johannesburg who compete in the Super Rugby competition. They were previously known as the Cats between the 1998 and 2006 seasons. They had varied results in the competition, finishing at the bottom of the table six times, but reaching the semifinal stage five times. They reached their first final in 2016 – where they lost to the Hurricanes 20–3 in Wellington – and repeated the feat in 2017, losing 17–25 to the Crusaders in Johannesburg.
The 2007 Super 14 season started in February 2007 with preseason matches held from mid-January. It finished on 19 May with the final at ABSA Stadium in Durban, in the first final between two South African teams in the history of Super Rugby. The visiting Bulls won the 2007 Super 14 Final, scoring a try in the 83rd minute and narrowly defeating the Sharks 20–19, thereby becoming the first South African side to win the Super Rugby title in the professional era.
The Southern Kings, known for sponsorship reasons as the Isuzu Southern Kings are a South African rugby union team that played Super Rugby in 2013, 2016 and 2017, before joining the Pro14 competition prior to the 2017–18 season. The team is based at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth and was formally announced at the opening of this stadium on 16 June 2009, in time to coincide with the 2009 British and Irish Lions tour to South Africa.
The Super Rugby competition in rugby union, including teams from Argentina, Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa is based on a "franchise" system of teams. The original member countries – Australia, New Zealand and South Africa – all have several regional franchises, while the expansion countries – Argentina and Japan – have one franchise each. This article provides specific detail as to the areas covered by each Super Rugby team.
The 2013 Super Rugby season was the third season of the new 15-team format for the Super Rugby competition involving teams from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. The tournament was won by the Chiefs, who defeated the Canberra-based Brumbies 27–22 in the competition final. For sponsorship reasons, this competition is known as FxPro Super Rugby in Australia, Investec Super Rugby in New Zealand and Vodacom Super Rugby in South Africa. Including the past incarnations as Super 12 and Super 14, this was the 18th season of the Southern Hemisphere's premier domestic competition. Conference matches took place every weekend from 15 February until 13 July – with a break between rounds 17 and 18 for internationals games – followed by the play-offs series that culminated in the final on 3 August.
The 2012 Super Rugby final was played between the South African Sharks and the New Zealand Chiefs Super Rugby teams on 4 August 2012. It was the 17th final in the Southern Hemisphere's premier transnational club rugby competition's history and the second under the newly expanded 15-team format. The Chiefs had qualified second highest during the regular season, while the Sharks qualified as the sixth, and lowest, team. The Chiefs went straight to the semi-final, where they beat fellow New Zealand team the Crusaders. The Sharks travelled to Brisbane and beat the Queensland Reds in the qualifying final and then the Stormers back in South Africa in the semi-final. As the Chiefs had qualified higher than the Sharks the final was played at Waikato Stadium, Hamilton.
The 2014 Super Rugby season is the fourth season of the 15-team format for the Super Rugby competition involving teams from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. For sponsorship reasons, this competition is known as Asteron Life Super Rugby in Australia, Investec Super Rugby in New Zealand and Vodacom Super Rugby in South Africa. Including its past incarnations as Super 12 and Super 14, this is the 19th season for the Southern Hemisphere's premier transnational club competition. The conference games will take place every weekend from 15 February until 12 July, followed by the finals series, culminating in the grand final on 2 August. The winners of the 2014 Super Rugby Season were the New South Wales Waratahs
The 2013 Super Rugby final was contested on 3 August 2013 by the Canberra-based Brumbies and Hamilton-based Chiefs. The Chiefs won 27–22 to give them their second consecutive Super Rugby title. The match was the last of the 2013 Super Rugby season, and was hosted by the Chiefs at Waikato Stadium. It was the eighteenth final in the history of the Southern Hemisphere's premier domestic rugby competition, and the third under the expanded fifteen-team format. The Chiefs had qualified highest during the regular season, while the Brumbies qualified third.
The 2015 Super Rugby season was the 20th season of Super Rugby and the fifth season featuring an expanded 15-team format. For sponsorship reasons, this competition was known as Asteron Life Super Rugby in Australia, Investec Super Rugby in New Zealand and Vodacom Super Rugby in South Africa. The round-robin matches took place every weekend from 13 February until 13 June, followed by the finals series and culminating in the final on 4 July. This was the final season that featured a 15-team format.
The 2014 Super Rugby Final, was played between the New South Wales Waratahs from Australia and the Crusaders from New Zealand on 2 August 2014. It was the 19th final in the Super Rugby competition's history and the fourth under the expanded 15-team format. The Waratahs had qualified in first place during the regular season, while the Crusaders had qualified in second place. Both teams hosted semi-final matches, with the Waratahs defeating fellow Australian team the Brumbies in Sydney and the Crusaders defeating South African team the Sharks in Christchurch. As the Waratahs had qualified higher, the final was held in Sydney.
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 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.
The 2018 Super Rugby season was the 23rd season of Super Rugby, an annual rugby union competition organised by SANZAAR between teams from Argentina, Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa. After two seasons in which 18 teams participated, the 2018 season reverted to a 15-team competition, consisting of three geographical conferences.
The 2017 Super Rugby Final was played between the Lions and the Crusaders. It was the 22nd final in the Super Rugby competition's history and the second but concluding installment under the current expanded 18-team format since a reduction to a 15-team format beginning from the next season. The Lions had qualified in first place of the log standings during the regular season, while the Crusaders had qualified in second place. Both teams hosted quarter-final and semi-final matches. In the quarter-finals the Lions beat the Sharks while the Crusaders beat fellow New Zealand team the Highlanders. For the semi-finals it was the Lions defeating last years winners the Hurricanes in Johannesburg and the Crusaders defeating the Chiefs in Christchurch. Because of being the higher placed team in the regular season log standings, the final was held in Johannesburg.
The 2019 Super Rugby season is the 24th season of Super Rugby, an annual rugby union competition organised by SANZAAR between teams from Argentina, Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa. The 2019 season is the second season using the reduced 15-team format consisting of three geographical conferences since being reduced from an 18-team competition in 2017.
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