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FACTBOX-Rugby-Key details of 2015 Super Rugby competition
February 9, 2015 / 7:02 AM / 3 years ago

FACTBOX-Rugby-Key details of 2015 Super Rugby competition

WELLINGTON, Feb 9 (Reuters) - Factbox on the 2015 Super
Rugby competition, which starts on Friday:  
   * The annual competition features regional teams from the
southern hemisphere, five each from New Zealand, South Africa
and Australia.  
    * The competition started as the Super 12 in 1996, a year
after the sport turned professional, and was expanded to 14
teams from 2006 and 15 in 2011 after the Melbourne Rebels were
added.  
   * The competition changed to a conference-based system for
each country in 2011, extending the season and guaranteeing more
local derbies.  
   * The competition will expand again next year, including a
sixth South African team and one each from Argentina and Japan.
    * Each team will play the other four sides in their
conference home and away, and four of the sides in each of the
other two conferences once to give a total of 16 games.  
   * Each team will also receive two bye weeks throughout the
competition.
   * The World Cup later this year means the competition will
not have a three-week break to accommodate the international
window in June.
   * Teams earn four points for a win, two for a draw, plus a
bonus point for scoring four tries in a match or losing by less
than seven points.  
   * The top side in each conference will advance to the
playoffs in the positions 1, 2, 3 dependent on their individual
competition points.  
   * The teams ranked four to six, based on their points total,
will also qualify for the playoffs and can come from any
conference.  
   * Teams ranked one and two will receive a bye in the first
round of the playoffs with the third-ranked team playing the
sixth ranked side, while the fourth ranked side will play the
fifth on the weekend. The higher ranked teams have home
advantage.  
   * The winners of each of those first round of matches will
then advance to the semi-finals against Team 1 and Team 2, with
the lowest ranked qualifier playing the top seed. Teams 1 & 2
have home advantage. 
   * New Zealand teams have dominated the competition, winning
12 of the 19 finals. The Canterbury Crusaders are the most
successful with seven titles.  
   * South Africa's Bulls are the only South African champions,
having won the title in 2007, 2009, 2010.  
   * Australia's ACT Brumbies have won the title twice, while
the Queensland Reds (2011) and New South Wales Waratahs (2014)
have won it once each.

 (Compiled by Greg Stutchbury; Editing by Nick Mulvenney)

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