New Zealand Rugby and Rugby Australia have agreed upon the format for next year’s Super Rugby, the professional rugby union club competition involving teams from the two countries, it has been reported.
All 12 teams involved will play each other once, with additional three round-robin fixtures to be set at random, according to the New Zealand Herald.
The regular season will comprise 14 games in total for each team, with seven at home and seven away.
The top eight-ranked teams will then progressing to the quarter-finals, in which the top team will play the eighth-placed team, the second against the seventh, the third against the sixth and the fourth against the fifth.
The higher-ranked team in each of the games will earn the right to host the matches.
The way in which the additional round-robin fixtures will be decided is apparently yet to be determined, with Rugby Australia said to be keen for them to be domestic games but NZR apparently opposed to this due to the more difficult route to the playoffs its teams would face.
It is suggested that the games could instead be determined based on the rankings of the Trans-Tasman Super Rugby table.
This format for the tournament is different to the two-conference structure that Rugby Australia is said to have preferred, which would have resulted in more local derbies being played.
The season is due to kick off in February next year and finish in mid-June, with the Blues having overcome the Highlanders in this year's final.
The competition was cancelled last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.