Benetton Treviso and Zebrey Parma will take part in the new tournament with 16 teams from next season.
The United Rugby Championship kicks off in September 2021, with the best clubs in South African rugby (the Cel Sharks, DHL Stormers, Emirates Lions and Vodacom Bulls) forming a league of sixteen teams of international caliber in the Guinness Book of World Records. The United Rugby Championship is bigger, more impressive and stronger than previous tournaments. Teams from the top five countries in the global rugby landscape, namely Ireland, Italy, Scotland, Wales and South Africa, will take part in a Super Club League that will make a difference and support the athletes on their path so that an event can proudly represent everyone involved in the game.
Outside the pitch, the United Rugby Championship seeks to provide its players with an adequate platform to tell their stories, to inspire a new generation of rugby geniuses with achievements on the pitch and in civil society, while witnessing for fans like rugby is a sport for all. This breakthrough agreement between the South African Federation and PRO14 Rugby will strengthen the existing partnership and further grow the game, benefiting all sixteen teams in the league.
United Rugby Championship CEO Martin Anay said:Fans are always demanding more from our tournament and we are now taking it to new heights. World champions at the United Rugby Championships, icons from the Guinness Six Nations, and tour players from the Rugby Championship, the British and Irish Lions will intensify the competition in an exciting new format. Since the inception of the Celtic League in 2001, the vision has always been innovative and evolving, creating a remarkable competition that motivates our athletes and teams to put on their best performances each week. Their ability has never been questioned, and now they can be given the ideal stage to express themselves in the best possible way”.
“The creation of the United Rugby Championship will begin to rebuild the world of club rugby.”.
“The arrival of the best South African teams and the choice not to play within the international windows will strengthen our league. We see the World Cup heroes taking on the best of the six nations in stadiums, creating an unprecedented attraction in the Clue Rugby landscape.b ”.
“Today, we have a clear goal and identity that unites all elements of our league. We took note of and responded to the challenges posed by our clubs by taking this event to the next level on and off the pitch. The Northern Hemisphere and the Southern Hemisphere rugby face each other every week, and we can’t wait to find out who will establish himself as the first United Rugby Championship champion.”In conclusion four.
South African Federation CEO Jury Rooks said: “For years, South African rugby has envisioned a future similar to that of the Northern Hemisphere rugby, and this announcement marks the realization of that vision. Our teams will challenge the best clubs in the four countries with the best rugby tradition and folklore and do it without changing time zones, all games will be played for the South African public in prime time. It is a springboard for South African rugby, opening new doors and announcing a new and exciting era for our sport.”.
New horizons for rugby
This agreement will pave the way for the South African Federation to join the Celtic and FIR federations as equal members in the PRO Rugby Championship. In a post-Pandemic sports landscape, this unification between the North and the South offers all the elements of optimism for the future.
Under the agreement, everyone participating in the United Rugby Championship will be eligible to qualify for the EPCR matches of the 2022/23 season.
Compared to the structure of the Guinness PRO14, the unit rugby championship will consist of the regular eighteen season days of returning to a ranking, avoiding overlapping with international weekends and maintaining the chances of teams competing for the title. Each match in the tournament will be important, with quarter-finals, semi-finals, and a grand final at the top stadium that will further improve the broader final stage, which promises more uncertainty.
The United Rugby Championship will be a venue for a wide variety of games, languages and cultures, with weekly challenges at iconic locations in the heart of the rugby world. The new tournament will allow South African teams from Super Rugby to play at your regular time, which will help increase the tournament’s audience and commercial value.
United Rugby Championship Formula
The tournament will use a unique ranking to identify the teams that reach the finals and compete for the champion title.
The regular season of the United Rugby Championship takes place over eighteen days, with the team playing a total of six home and away matches with members of their local group and twelve home or away games against other elements of the league.Groups
Irish Group: Connach, Leinster, Munster, Ulster
Welsh Group: Dragons, Cardiff Rugby, Ospreys, Scarlets
South African Group: Cell C Sharks, DHL Stormers, Emirates Lions E Vodacom Bulls
Italy-Scottish Group: Benetton Rugby, Edinburgh, Glasgow Warriors, Zebra Rugby Club
A single ranking will be used to place all teams after eighteen days of the regular season. The first eight qualifiers will advance to the playoffs. Teams based on first to eighth place will advance to the field for the final.
The quarter-finals and semi-finals will identify the two teams that will qualify for the Grand Final.
United Rugby Championship – Participation in the Champions and Challenge Cup
A total of eight teams from the United Rugby Championship will qualify for each season’s next season’s Heineken Champions Cup. The remaining teams will take part in the Challenge Cup.
Subject to the finalization of the contract with the EPCR, the qualification of the South African teams for the Champions Cup 2022/23 is guaranteed based on their place in the United Rugby Championship last season.
All points earned during the United Rugby Championship season will help define the rankings of local groups, the first of which will qualify for the Heineken Champions Cup next season in each regional group. This change to format will ensure longer intensity for long-term rivals.
The other four places available for the Heineken Champions Cup will be assigned to the top four teams in the overall standings who have not qualified through the four regional groups.