It is the successor of Super 10 after the advent of professionalism. It is the main professional club competition in southern emisphere.
It was born as Super 12 in 1996.
Australia decided to play with 3 federal franchises:
New Zealand played with 5 federal franchises:
- ACT Brumbies, federal franchise representing Capital Territory union
- Reds, federal franchise representing Queensland union
- Waratahs, federal franchise representing New South Wales union
South Africa decided to send the best 4 teams from previous season Currie Cup. It was only in 1998 that South Africa adopted the franchises system creating the following:
For 2006 season an expansion was decided and the competition became Super 14 when 2 new franchises joined it: one from Australia, Western Force, federal franchise representing Western Australia union, and one from South Africa, Cheetahs, federal franchise representing Free State union.
- Blues, federal franchise representing Auckland, North Harbour and Northland unions
- Chiefs, federal franchise representing Bay of Plenty, Counties Manukau, King Country, Thames Valley and Waikato unions
- Crusaders, federal franchise representing Buller, Canterbury, Mid Canterbury, South Canterbury, Tasman and West Coast unions
- Highlanders, federal franchise representing North Otago, Otago and Southland unions
- Hurricanes, federal franchise representing East Coast, Poverty Bay, Hawke's Bay, Taranaki, Wanganui, Manawatu, Wairarapa-Bush, Horowenhua-Kapiti and Wellington unions
In 2011 a new private team from Australia joined the competition, now Super Rugby: Melbourne Rebels.
A 6th south african franchise Southern Kings, representing Eastern Province union, was admitted in 2013 in place of Lions, the worst south african team in Super Rugby 2012.
At the end of Super Rugby 2013, Lions won a promotion relegation playoff against Southern Kings and were readmitted for next season.
Southern Kings will be readmitted in 2016.
In 2016 the format will be revamped, admitting 18 teams and 2 new nations:
- A new franchise from Argentina
- a new franchise from Japan
- The classic 5 franchises/teams from Australia
- The classic 5 franchises from New Zealand
- All the 6 franchises from South Africa
|Super Rugby - South African Conference
|Super Rugby - Australian Conference
|Super Rugby - New Zealand Conference
www.sanzarrugby.com/superrugby/ - Official SANZAR site.
superxv.com/ - Site about Super Rugby.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Rugby - Wikipedia pages about Super Rugby.
Every site was scanned using also web.archive.org