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Super Rugby set for 2018 competition overhaul

Super Rugby set for 2018 competition overhaul
May 23, 2016

SANZAAR Chief Executive Andy Marinos has advised that the governing body is planning to review and overhaul the Super Rugby competition.

Speaking to Fairfax New Zealand, Marinos advised that, with the help of a consultancy firm, he has expects to conduct a 10-year strategic plan which will look at assessing the current conference style structures, with Marinos stating everything from expansion into new territories to reducing teams in some countries will be up for discussion.

Expressions of interest for potential new franchises will be sought, with bids potentially coming from South America, North America, other parts of Asia and Europe.

Marinos explained “you’ve got to be open-minded when you go into a process.

“Is it a continual expansion? Is it an expansion in two conferences? Is it a reduction and creating a two tier system? There’s a whole lot of different permutations one has to consider as you go through a process like this if you want to get the best result.

“Certain countries may reduce and some may retain or expand. If you want to be fair to the fans and people who are supporting us you’ve to look at all options. You can’t just look at only one option about expanding further.”

Super Rugby’s three new franchises, Japan’s Sunwolves, the Kings from South Africa and Argentina’s Jaguares have been criticised for their performance levels but SANZAAR currently remains committed to the 18-team competition with further expansion sounded out by Marinos from 2018.

Japan’s Sunwolves entered Super Rugby this season.

Marinos added “to try to put a new team up in 2017 you’re not giving them enough time to prepare. You need at least 12 to 18 months to identify the opportunity and then make sure the high performance and commercial models can underpin it. We’ve seen the consequence of not having all that up and ready at the start of this year with all the disruption and change, particularly in Japan and with the Kings. 2018 for me is more achievable should we look to expand.”

Marinos rejected the idea of a combination of Pacific Island nations Fiji, Tonga and Samoa fielding a franchise, citing financial concerns, adding “I know there’s a fair amount of interest coming out of the Pacific Islands and I think an amalgamation or looking at putting a couple of them together would certainly tick the box from a competitive and high performance point of view so we’ll have a good look at that.

“It’s a challenge as it is with the geography we’ve got and the multiple time zones. Instinctively I’d say playing out of Fiji, Tonga or Papua New Guinea as a base would probably be problematic but you’ve got to build the commercial model and do the feasibility study.”

Marinos has previously ruled out the possibility of a Rugby World Club Challenge match between the Super Rugby champions and the winners of the European Rugby Champions Cup.

Click here to read Liam Napier's original article at Rugby Heaven.

27th April 2016 - DEBUTANT SUNWOLVES MAKING PROGRESS IN EXPANDED SUPER RUGBY SEASON

11th March 2016 - SINGAPORE NATIONAL STADIUM PREPARES FOR SUPER RUGBY DEBUT

20th February 2016 - SUPER RUGBY LOOKS FORWARD TO EXPANDED NEW SEASON

24th November 2015 - NEW SANZAR CHIEF EXECUTIVE APPOINTMENT

27th July 2015 - SAMOA RUNS UP $1.5 MILLION DEFICIT FROM HOSTING THE ALL BLACKS

2nd May 2014 - SANZAR CONFIRMS SUPER RUGBY EXPANSION TO 18 TEAMS IN 2016 


 

 

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