Scottish Rugby and WRU confirm new cross-border teams
Scottish Rugby and the Welsh Rugby Union can today confirm details of the planned cross-border element of the new Super6 competition, which begins in November 2019.
The new top tier of Scottish domestic rugby will feature Ayr, Boroughmuir, Heriot’s, Melrose, Stirling County and Watsonian FC after they were awarded places in the competition following an open application process in 2018.
Super6 kicks off its inaugural domestic season, which is contested over 12 rounds, on the weekend of 9 November 2019 and concludes with the final on 28 March 2020.
A key aspect of the new Super6 concept was to see Scotland’s Super6 teams compete against clubs of a similar level beyond their own borders to test both players and coaches in a different competitive environment.
The partnership with the Welsh Rugby Union will see teams from the newly named Indigo Group Premiership 2018/19 season play on consecutive weekends, against Scottish Rugby’s Super6 teams starting in mid-April 2020.
The confirmed teams from Wales are the top six placed teams from last season, Merthyr, Cardiff, Pontypridd, Llandovery, Ebbw Vale and Aberavon.
All participating clubs will play six matches across two pools of six teams split between Scottish and Welsh sides.
In year one of the competition every team will play three home and three away fixtures and the cross-border winner will be decided on a league ranking based on number of points gained over the six matches.
Scottish Rugby and the Welsh Rugby Union will now work together to finalise competition rules, commercial rights and confirm the broadcast opportunities.
The cross-border competition will also provide a development opportunity for match officials and both Unions have committed to providing an appropriate level of refereeing appointment for the matches.
Scottish Rugby Chief Executive, Mark Dodson, said: “This is another exciting step in the development of Super6 and I’m delighted to join with the WRU and create a strong cross-border opportunity for our respective teams to compete in. We have developed a very positive working partnership with the WRU in recent years and this is an extension of that work.
“We want our Super6 players to be exposed to a range of experiences which are designed to raise the standard of players at that level and we now know the Welsh teams they will pit themselves against and it promises to be a very interesting competition to see develop in the coming years.
Scottish Rugby’s Technical Director, Stephen Gemmell said: “It is great news to be able to confirm that the promised cross-border element of Super6 is now agreed and in place with our colleagues from the Welsh Rugby Union and the Welsh teams confirmed.
“It is a key strategic element of our overall objective to raise the standard of rugby at the top of our domestic game in Scotland and having a concentrated competition will test our players, coaches and match officials in a credible and performance focussed way.
“We are looking forward to working closely with the Welsh Rugby Union on this project and are encouraged by their decision to see the benefits of linking with us and playing against the Super6 teams going forward.”
WRU Group Chief Executive Martyn Phillips said, “We are thrilled that six of our Indigo Group Premiership teams will join Scottish Super6 teams in a cross-border competition at the end of this season. It is an exciting development for our Premiership sides, while giving supporters something new to look forward to.”
WRU Community Director Geraint John added, “It’s great to be able to confirm this cross-border initiative with Scottish Rugby. We’ve worked closely with our clubs to increase the level of competition available to them and we look forward to seeing how being part of the Super6 will challenge players, coaches and match officials.”