Rugby 2020: South Africa to reportedly join Six Nations, Rugby Championship


World champions South Africa are reportedly set to leave the Rugby Championship after the 2023 World Cup in favour of the Six Nations tournament.

A bombshell report from The Daily Mail revealed behind-the-scenes negotiations have been taking place for some time, and the Springboks’ move to Europe’s annual competition is an “inevitability”.

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One source confirmed “things were falling nicely into place”, and South Africa would become the newest members of Europe’s premier competition in 2024.

Rather than remove the struggling Italian side from the Six Nations, South Africa’s inclusion would reportedly form a seven-team event, congesting the European rugby calendar.

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media_cameraSouth Africa defeated England in the 2019 Rugby World Cup final.

If the drastic change comes to fruition, it would come as a massive loss the southern hemisphere’s Rugby Championship, featuring Australia, New Zealand and Argentina.

Although this could leave the door open for cult heroes Japan to join the Rugby Championship, the tournament would undeniably weaken as a whole.

A move to the Six Nations would greatly benefit the Springboks, as the flight distance to Europe is considerably shorter, and the time zones are almost identical, eradicating the side effects of jet lag.

Away matches would also take place during South African prime time, rather than the middle of the night, a far more attractive proposition for domestic audiences.

Two of South Africa’s club sides — the Cheetahs and Kings — dropped out of the southern hemisphere’s Super Rugby competition in 2017, instead joining the Pro14 where the competed against teams from Wales, Scotland and Ireland.

Multiple former Springboks already play for Europe-based clubs, the lucrative pay more appealing than what Super Rugby offers.

Negotiations are reportedly still ongoing.

The Springboks thank the Yokohama crowd after their World Cup victory.pacific.epeak.in/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/1581144808_461_Rugby-2020-South-Africa-to-reportedly-join-Six-Nations-Rugby.jpeg”/>
media_cameraThe Springboks thank the Yokohama crowd after their World Cup victory.

The Springboks won the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan, becoming the second nation to achieve the feat twice, joining New Zealand.

South Africa won the Rugby Championship in 2019, the first time they had done so since the competition was revamped in 2012.

Originally published as World champs drop global rugby bombshell



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