The Champions Cup won't be a European competition moving forward | Ruck

The Champions Cup won’t be a European competition moving forward

South African sides could be playing in the Champions Cup as soon as 2022, according to The Telegraph. 

SA Rugby are now having to explore a variety of options after New Zealand Rugby announced their intentions to leave the Super Rugby model in the near future.

Their new competition proposed by NZR would be based in Australasia and feature significant Pacific Island representation.

They have long considered the benefits of a move to play in Europe, including a more favourable time difference with a source revealing: “All bets are off now. We are examining all options.”

Two South African franchises, the Kings and Cheetahs, are already part of the Guinness Pro14, which could now be expanded to become the Pro18.

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Neither the Kings or Cheetahs are currently eligible for the Champions Cup but that would be set to change if all of South Africa’s professional sides were involved, with the South African sides needing to play in the 2021-22 Pro18 season in order to qualify for the 2022-23 Champions Cup

It’s also been suggested that their are also active talks with the heads of the Japanese Top League and Major League Rugby about expanding the tournament further in the future.

Both leagues are keen to get more exposure in Europe, and see the Champions Cup as an ideal opportunity to get their top clubs in front of that audience.


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