The Plus500 Brumbies have welcomed today's announcement from Rugby Australia and New Zealand Rugby confirming Super Rugby's format for the next two seasons.
Set to kick-off on 18 February 2022, Super Rugby Pacific sees the introduction of Fijian Drua and Moana Pasifika who will join the five Australian and five New Zealand sides.
The competition structure for Super Rugby Pacific for 2022 and 2023 will be as follows:
- 12 teams (alphabetical order) with Blues, Brumbies, Chiefs, Crusaders, Fijian Drua, Highlanders, Hurricanes, Melbourne Rebels, Moana Pasifika, NSW Waratahs, Queensland Reds, Western Force
- 18-week competition window from 18 February to 18 June 2022 and 24 February to 24 June 2023
- 91 matches in total
- Teams will play 14 regular season matches with each team to host seven matches
- Teams will play 8 teams once and 3 teams twice with a focus on derby matches
- One competition table with teams ranked 1 to 12 based on competition points
- Three-week playoff format involving the top eight teams on the overall competition table with quarters, semis and final as follows:
- Quarterfinals – 1 v 8, 2 v 7, 3 v 6 and 4 v 5 with the top ranked team hosting
- Semi-Finals – top ranked quarter-final winner hosts against lowest ranked quarter-final winner & 2nd highest ranked quarterfinal winner hosts 3rd highest ranked quarterfinal winner
- Final – top ranked semi-final winner hosts the other semi-final winner
The Fijian Drua had previously competed in Australia's National Rugby Championship, winning the title in 2018. Their inclusion was confirmed thanks to the support of Rugby Australia and New Zealand Rugby as well as that of the Federal Government's PacificAus Sports Program through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Fiji Rugby Union will announce where Fijian Drua home matches will be played shortly, while Moana Pasifika will play their home fixtures primarily in New Zealand.
Super Rugby Pacific’s two new entrants will play each other twice in the first two seasons with other examples where teams play twice to be determined by a seeding process based on 2021 results, with an emphasis on local derbies.
Plus500 Brumbies CEO, Phil Thomson said: "This is an exciting day for all rugby fans, and an important one for us at the Plus500 Brumbies with the club now having clarity on the Super Rugby format for the next two seasons."
"The format ensures our members and supporters will have at least seven home games a season and a thrilling competition full of the tribalism and rivalry we all want to see.
"For our proud partners and key stakeholders, this announcement provides some certainty over the immediate future of the competition which has been in a state of flux over the past couple of years due to COVID-19.
"The Brumbies would like to thank Rugby Australia, NZR, Nine Entertainment and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade for helping to ensure this great competition can move forward into an exciting new era."