Three More South African Sides Set To Join Pro14

Blues players celebrate their win during the round 12 Super Rugby match between the Waratahs and the Blues at Lottoland

Three More South African Sides Set To Join Pro14

Last week a Fairfax report revealed that Super Rugby bosses were looking at expanding into the US, which now appears to be a contingency plan should the South African franchises jump ship.

The Cheetahs and Kings, who were cut from the down-sized Super Rugby previous year, already play in the competition which includes teams form Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales.

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The Guinness PRO14 is set to continue it's recent expansion into the southern hemisphere, with three more South African sides set to join the competition by the start of the 2020-21 season.

In Wales Online, Steffan Thomas has reported that the Natal Sharks, now third in the South African standings, will join the competition along with one other club for the 2019-20 season.

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British and Irish media are reporting that South Africa are set to pull out of Super Rugby and align with Celtic tournament the Pro 14. It is understood they feel their sides are handicapped due to the different time zones in the competition and the unfair composition of the conferences. It means in its current form several South African sides have multiple games in New Zealand while others have more in Australia.

South African rugby has also seen an exodus of top players who chase lucrative deals in Europe, with the move to the PRO14 considered a way of stopping that trend.

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Pro14 bosses have been heartened by the on-field impact of the Cheetahs and Kings and believe the prospective introduction of the Sharks and further South African sides will significantly increase the quality of the competition and make it more attractive to broadcasters and investors.

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