New Zealand wants South Africa and Argentina out of Super Rugby

New Zealand wants South Africa and Argentina out of Super Rugby
Friday's New Zealand rugby game revealed plans to drop South African and Argentine Jaguars from Super Rugby next year, while it could herald a major change in stuttering competition.

The New Zealand Agency said that the planned renewal of the main championship of the Southern Hemisphere Club will contain five existing teams in New Zealand, one from the Pacific and two to four from Australia.

"We want competitive teams and fans will want to watch them face to face, week, week," said CEO Mark Robinson.

Robinson blamed the COVID-19 pandemic for the decision to exclude South Africa and Argentina from its plans, saying the virus means that long-distance travel is impossible.

He said the decisions made about the new competition were "very difficult".

"We have a great deal of sympathy for what is happening to rugby in Argentina and South Africa, their inability to play at the present time and the uncertainty that it creates," he said.

Robinson was unable to provide details on whether the governing body SANZAAR would oversee the new competition, the club ownership structure, or even whether it would be called Super Rugby.

The epidemic halted this year's Super Rugby season in March, forcing New Zealand and Australia to create local versions of the competition.

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