South African rugby finally resumes on 26 September

Mzwandile Stick. Image credit: Twitter/Springboks

Local rugby fans will finally see some action from 26 September, 2020 when the rugby season resumes in South Africa.

The action kicks off with a Blue Bulls vs Sharks and Lions vs Stormers double-header, which has been dubbed Super Fan Saturday, at Loftus Versfeld in Tshwane.

Springbok Showdown

However, this will be a teaser to the Springbok Showdown at the Newlands in Cape Town on 3 October, according to an SA Rugby statement on Wednesday.

The Springbok Showdown will see the best local stars taking on up-and-coming talents. Springbok assistant coaches Mzwandile Stick and Deon Davis will coach the Springbok Green and Springbok Gold teams that will take on each other.

The match will be aired live on SuperSport. The squad for the teams will be announced this Saturday before the draft pick the following weekend.

“This will not only be an opportunity to see the best of the best available talent in South Africa square off against each other in what promises to be something never seen before, but it will also provide the players with another valuable opportunity to shake of the rust and get the legs and lungs going after not playing any rugby in the last six months,” Director of Rugby Rassie Erasmus said.

Final in 2021

For the first time in South African rugby, the season will be played during the Christmas and New Year periods. The semi-finals will be played on 16 January, 2021 and the final on 23 January, 2021.

“We’ve worked very hard with Government, SuperSport, our various sponsors and the franchises to get to this point and it’s great to know we can now look forward to brilliant provincial rugby being played in the next couple of months,” SA Rugby CEO Jurie Roux said.

Fans will however not be allowed in stadiums because of COVID-19 restrictions. Further details will be released in due course, but each team will face others teams home and away and will have two byes.

Roux added that international travel restrictions will determine whether the Springboks will play the Rugby Championship in Australia or not.

“We’re still not in a position to confirm plans for the Springboks, but it remains our wish that they play Tests this year,” he said.

Taking part in the Championship will give the Springboks valuable preparation for next year’s British and Irish Lions Tour.

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