Super Rugby Expansion On The Cards?
January 24, 2013 in Uncategorized
It seems as if SARU’s ineptitude has paid off and that SANZAR will pull their nuts out of the fire.
The expansion of the Super Rugby competition from 2016 is on the cards with a good chance of a sixth SA franchise being included, if one considers the recent utterings in the media by SANZAR boss, Greg Peters, and a decision will apparently made later this year.
From Business Day on 18 January:
In line with this, Peters was aware South Africa would require six franchises in future to alleviate the problem of trying to squeeze six teams into five spots and to ensure Sanzar’s transformation objectives were met by accommodating the Southern and Eastern Cape franchise on a long-term basis.
“We don’t have a closed mind to another South African franchise,” he said.
“We know that it is imperative to South Africa to have six teams and we are giving that consideration.”
But further expansion, into Asia and the Americas also seem to be on the cards. Quoted in Rugby Heaven this morning:
“We are considering whether or not we will include new territories in Super Rugby and one of the factors we’ll be weighing up is their competitiveness,” Peters told The Australian yesterday.
“Super Rugby in its present form is a pretty successful model … and we are not going to water it down. But we’d be derelict in our duty if we didn’t consider expanding into areas. The United States is a very big market and so is Japan and Asia generally. Ultimately it all comes down to what is in the best interests of the three SANZAR parties.”
So, will we see a Super 18 or even a Super 21 from 2016?
The biggest problem with any expansion will be the accommodation of more teams, and weaker ones at that, in a already congested rugby programme and the only way I can see it working is if they convert the Super Rugby competition into a two-tier competition.