Fixture schedule for first three rounds of Rainbow Cup revealed

Edinburgh and Glasgow Warriors play each other twice on weekends of 8th and 15th May

Edinburgh’s Hamish Watson in action against George Horne and Adam Hastings of Glasgow Warriors. Photo credit should read: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk
Edinburgh’s Hamish Watson in action against George Horne and Adam Hastings of Glasgow Warriors. Photo credit should read: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk

THE Guinness PRO14 Rainbow Cup will kick-off on the weekend of 24th April with three rounds of ‘derby’ matches, before cross-hemisphere games between Europe and South Africa get under way from the weekend of 29th May onwards.

Glasgow Warriors will host Edinburgh in round two on the weekend of 8th May, and then play the reverse fixture in round three on weekend of 15th May.

The tournament has been rescheduled and reformatted in response to the challenges posed by Covid, and there will be no travel by European teams to South Africa.


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Rounds four to six will see the four South African ‘Super’ franchises play their away games in Europe and those fixtures will be announced once all appropriate travel approvals have been confirmed by the relevant authorities and governments.

A total of six rounds (eight games per round) will take place with all teams ranked in a single league table. The top two teams will then play each other in the Guinness PRO14 Rainbow Cup Final on June 19.

PRO14 Rugby is currently consulting with its broadcast partners to select kick-off times and will confirm the scheduling as soon as possible.

“Everyone is glad that we can now put some certainty into the rugby calendar in what has been an unpredictable period,” said David Jordan, Tournament Director, PRO14 Rugby. “Planning for a cross-hemisphere competition where the situation has been so fluid has provided many challenges, but we believe we have found a solution that is practical and safe to deliver a unique competition that supporters can get excited about.

“Throughout the Guinness PRO14 season, we have liaised with our unions and their governments to ensure we are meeting the conditions set out for elite sport to operate. We are very grateful for that support, without which a cross-border competition such as ours could not have taken place.”

GUINNESS PRO14 RAINBOW CUP FIXTURES:

Round One – Weekend of April 24, 2021

  • Ulster v Connacht
  • Leinster v Munster
  • Benetton v Glasgow Warriors
  • Edinburgh v Zebre Rugby Club
  • Ospreys v Cardiff Blues
  • Dragons v Scarlets
  • Vodacom Bulls v Emirates Lions
  • DHL Stormers v Cell C Sharks

Round Two – Weekend of May 1, 2021 (EPCR Semi-Final Weekend)

  • DHL Stormers v Vodacom Bulls
  • Cell C Sharks v Emirates Lions

Round Two – Weekend of May 8, 2021

  • Connacht v Leinster
  • Munster v Ulster
  • Zebre v Benetton
  • Glasgow Warriors v Edinburgh
  • Cardiff Blues v Dragons
  • Scarlets v Ospreys

Round Three – Weekend of May 8, 2021

  • Vodacom Bulls v Cell C Sharks
  • Emirates Lions v DHL Stormers

Round Three – Weekend of May 15, 2021

  • Munster v Connacht
  • Leinster v Ulster
  • Benetton v Zebre
  • Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors
  • Scarlets v Cardiff Blues
  • Dragons v Ospreys

Round 4: Weekend of May 29.

Round 5: Weekend of June 5.

Round 6: Weekend of June 12.

Final: Weekend of June 19.


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About David Barnes 3912 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including he Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.

8 Comments

  1. All things considered isn’t this ‘Tournament’ just a bit too contrived? In any event if it is such a great idea could this not have waited till next year?
    Up until a few days ago it seemed the Lions tour would be based in the UK, but now it seems it will go ahead in South Africa without spectators. With that in mind, will the quality of the South African sides be such that it will be any less significant a tournament if it went ahead without SA involvement and the resultant cost factor, if you get my drift.
    Because the only reason for it is, I imagine, financial rather than player welfare. Will the players have to remain in some sort of ‘Bubble’ for instance in order to complete the tournament? With the costs involved, travel accommodation and everything else, then add on the possibility, if not probability that it will be disrupted by the Wuhan-lurgy, is it really worth it this year?
    As for calling it the Rainbow Tournament, I’m sure there isn’t a crock of Gold at the end of it, it just seems like another indication of the touchy feely society we have to put up with these days.

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  2. If this dogs dinner of a Rainbow Cup is the answer I’ve no idea what the question could have been

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    • Ok it’s a bit of a mess but surely the chance to see the SA franchises is a good thing? I’m looking forward to it especially when the likes of Leinster play the saffers.

      Mention is made of ongoing discussions with broadcast partners. Have they announced who this will be yet?

      • My fear is that we’re being sold a pup.
        Reports from SA indicate that their teams will have two squads – one for games in SA which will have all their internationalists, and another for northern hemisphere matches which may not include their superstars.They don’t want their internationalists getting injured before the Lions arrive.
        Bit like Leinster/ Munster for run of the mill Pro14 fixtures.

      • Not sure if it is restricted to Premier Sports that there will be much of an audience to worry about times.

      • Games will probably be re-shown on FreeSports (available on Freeview) for a week or so afterwards and there may be the odd live game there although probably the likes of Benetton v Treviso if the Pro14 is anything to go by.

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