PRO14 unveil plans for ‘Rainbow Cup’ at end of current season

Vodacom Bulls, Emirates Lions, Cell C Sharks and DHL Stormers link up with existing sides in new competition

Image: ©Craig Watson
Image: ©Craig Watson

THE current Guinness PRO14 campaign will end in March after 16 rounds ahead of four South African ‘Super’ teams – Vodacom Bulls, Emirates Lions, Cell C Sharks and DHL Stormers – linking up with the existing sides from Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales in a 16-team “Rainbow Cup” competition yo run from the middle of April to the middle of June.

Qualification for EPCR tournaments in 2021-22 will be decided by rankings after Round 16, while the two Conference winners will face each other in a final in late March.

The “Rainbow Cup” will kick off on April 17th and will consist of a pool stage followed by a final between the two pool winners on 19th June. The two pools of eight will each be made up of two Irish, two South African, two Welsh, one Italian and one Scottish club. Each team will play one game against each pool opponent.


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“At a time where our sport has faced its greatest challenge, we have promising news about an innovative solution to partner with South African rugby ahead of the British & Irish Lions tour,” said Martin Anayi, CEO, PRO14 Rugby.

“It was vital that we worked with all parties to ensure our 12 teams had a clear road towards European qualification. With a Lions tour in South Africa to come it is hard to think of anything better to whet the appetite than the best players from the Celtic regions competing against World Cup-winning Springboks in the Guinness PRO14 Rainbow Cup.”


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About David Barnes 3908 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.