The 2020 Super Rugby match schedule has been announced by SANZAAR. The tournament will kick-off with two derbies on Friday 31 January. The Blues will host the Chiefs at Eden Park in Auckland while later the same evening the Brumbies will host the Reds at GIO Stadium in Canberra.
Super Rugby's continued international footprint will see matches played in six countries across the 18-week regular season, with matches played in Argentina, Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa.
The World Rugby international Test match window for inbound matches/tours to Argentina, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa is now in July so this allows Super Rugby to be played uninterrupted across the 21-week tournament timeframe (including the three-week Finals series).
The tournament’s 15-team, three-Conference format remains the same in 2020. Each team plays 16 regular season conference matches that include eight matches within their own Conference (home and away) and four matches against teams from each of the other Conferences (home or away). Each team also has two byes. This is a total of 120 matches in the regular season.
Australia Conference: Brumbies, Rebels, Reds, Waratahs, Sunwolves [Japan]
New Zealand Conference: Blues, Chiefs, Crusaders, Highlanders, Hurricanes
South African Conference: Bulls, Lions, Sharks, Stormers, Jaguares [Argentina]
The Finals series will again comprise a seven-match, three-week, eight-team finals series. Each of the three Conference winners will host a quarter-final. The team with the most tournament points that is not a Conference winner, regardless of Conference, will host the fourth quarter-final. This Wildcard team will be joined in the quarter-finals by the next best four Wildcard teams based on tournament points and regardless of Conference.