Super Rugby

Super Rugby Logo

Super Rugby, governed by SANZAAR, is the largest and most competitive rugby union competition in the southern hemisphere with 18 sides, comprised of five teams from Australia, five teams from New Zealand, six teams from South Africa, and one team from each of Japan and Argentina.

» 2017 Super Rugby Fixtures.
» 2016 Super Rugby table
» Latest Rugby videos

The competition was originally founded in 1996 as Super 12 – an expansion of the South Pacific Championship that began in 1986 – and continued with 12 teams until 2005. In 2006 the competition was expanded and renamed Super 14 with two new franchises, the Western Force (Perth) and Central Cheetahs (Free State and Northern Cape Province), entering the competition following ongoing negotiations in 2005.

In 2009, following prolonged discussion, SANZAR announced its intentions to expand the competition to 15 teams in 2011 with the last franchise to be the Rebels, based in Melbourne. The competition was consequently rebranded Super Rugby, but is colloquially referred to as the ‘Super 15’. SANZAR has hinted at further expanding the competition in 2016 with sides possibly coming from either Argentina, Japan, the U.S.

The 2013 Super Rugby competition was won by the Chiefs, who defeated the Brumbies 27-22 to claim their second consecutive Super Rugby title. From its inception, the competition has been dominated by New Zealand sides – winning a combined 12 from 18 on 16 of 18 finals appearances. From New Zealand the Crusaders are the competitions most successful side winning seven titles. The Bulls remain South Africa’s most successful side winning three titles and the Brumbies are Australia’s most successful with two. Only six sides have ever won a Super Rugby championship.

In 2016 the competition was expanded from 15 to 18 teams, welcoming a sixth South African team (the Southern Kings), along with foundation teams from Japan (the Tokyo Sunwolves) and Argentina (the Jaguares). These new teams also brought a change to the Super Rugby conference structure. The previous system of three conferences spread equally into Australia, New Zealand and Africa became two groups: the Australasian Group, comprising of Australia and New Zealand, and the South African Group, comprising of two African conferences along with the Argentinian and Japanese sides.

Crusader and All Black Dan Carter stands as the competition’s highest point scorer (1,533); Doug Howlett the top try scorer (59); Dan Carter has kicked the most conversions (185); and Andrew Mehrtens has kicked the most penalties (202). The competition is renowned for attacking, physical rugby and is praised internationally for its flare and spectacular tries.

Super Rugby Articles

Does the Pumas’ success raise the Jaguares’ expectations?

Does the Pumas’ success raise the Jaguares’ expectations?

by , 30 Sep 2016

Raise your hand if you had the Jaguares tipped to be a genuine top-eight chance in their inaugural year of Super Rugby.

Five NRC names for your notebook

Five NRC names for your notebook

by , 27 Sep 2016

We’re two rounds out from the 2016 National Rugby Championship semi-finals, and things are certainly hotting up among the teams in contention for the top four.

Tahs can build off Super Rugby draw

Tahs can build off Super Rugby draw

by , 22 Sep 2016

While draws are always a matter of contention and debate in any football code. The massive distances between Super Rugby participants often means that the arrangement of matches can seem to make or break a team’s season before the season actually begins.

Super Rugby needs more teams – five more, in fact

Super Rugby needs more teams – five more, in fact

by , 21 Sep 2016

Whether you like it or not, the conference system is the best model for a competition like Super Rugby, and it’s here to stay.

Rugby must balance two paths to growth in Australia

Rugby must balance two paths to growth in Australia

by , 21 Sep 2016

We’re always asking: ‘What is the future of rugby?’ Binary answers are elusive, and probably false.

Aussie sides get a mixed bag in the 2017 Super Rugby Draw

Aussie sides get a mixed bag in the 2017 Super Rugby Draw

by , 20 Sep 2016

Recent Australian Super Rugby heavyweights the Brumbies and Waratahs will meet just once in next year’s regular season, while Melbourne have been handed the first game and the toughest early draw.

2017 Super Rugby draw: Same old format for disgruntled fans

2017 Super Rugby draw: Same old format for disgruntled fans

by , 20 Sep 2016

The Super Rugby draw for next season has been revealed, with the unpopular conference-based format here to stay for another year and an interesting choice of opening fixture for the season.

No changes to Super Rugby conference format

by , 20 Sep 2016

SANZAAR boss Andy Marinos says Super Rugby needs to improve its competitiveness, but the hotly debated conference system which made its debut in 2016 is here to stay.

Get used to it folks, the Super Rugby format is here to stay

Get used to it folks, the Super Rugby format is here to stay

by , 19 Sep 2016

A barrage of criticism from rugby fans won’t stop SANZAAR from persevering with this year’s controversial Super Rugby format.

Adam Coleman insists the Force have a strong future

by , 19 Sep 2016

Wallabies lock Adam Coleman is adamant the Western Force have a bright future, but only time will tell whether his prediction rings true.


Older Articles »