A Brand New PRO14 Season Begins

As little as three weeks back, we saw the pride of Ireland’s Leinster, claim their 7th PRO14 title for the 2019/20 season. In what was a one-sided contested final, Leinster overcame fellow Irish rivals Ulster in a well-dominated 27-5 victory.

With less than a calendar month to celebrate, this weekend we will see the start of a brand new 2020/21 PRO14 tournament. Zebre and Cardiff will open the new competition this weekend, followed by an array of fixtures from various European teams.

Pro 14 Rugby

PRO14 2020 Notable Omissions:

Since the four major South African franchises will not participate in the 2021 SANZAR Super Rugby season, they will be joining the PRO14 season; with The Cheetahs and The Kings getting omitted from the tournament. In what is set to be an exciting expansion for the European Rugby tournament, The South African Cheetahs, are said to have been deeply unimpressed with being kicked out of the PRO14 tournament. It came as a huge surprise, as many players and coaching staff had not forecasted their PRO14 omission.

Even further down the line, The Kings recently filed for voluntary liquidation, which made them an ineligible franchise to compete in this season’s tournament.

Current negotiations are in motion, where potentially, the best of the South African franchises will increase this season’s PRO14 tournament, to a 16-team tournament. The four teams consist of; The Blue Bulls, The Lions, The Sharks and The Stormers. All four of those sides have plenty of international experience at test level, which would make the PRO16 a far greater competitive tournament once confirmed.

Will the four best South African franchises create greater exposure for the PRO14 tournament?


Round 1 PRO14 Fixtures and Venues:

For now, the South African teams have not received any formal confirmation on whether or not to proceed with this season’s tournament. They are patiently awaiting the results as to when and how the new additional sides will blend into the proposed PRO16 tournament.

As they await the confirmation, they will be fortunate to watch the traditional sides from Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales participate this weekend in the first round of the 2020/21 PRO14 tournament.

The main highlight of this weekend which will guarantee action-packed rugby will see defending champions, Leinster, host Welsh outfit, Newport Dragons. Both sides will be looking to kick off their campaign on a high; will the visiting side, Newport Dragons have the calibre to beat Leinster at home in Dublin?

dragons v leinster

2nd October 2020 PRO14 Fixtures:

Zebre v Cardiff: Blues Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi

Ulster v Benneton: Kingspan Stadium

Leinster v Dragons: RDS Arena

3rd October 2020 PRO14 Fixtures:

Scarlets v Munster: Parc y Scarlets

Connacht v Glasgow Warriors: Galway Sportsgrounds

Edinburgh v Ospreys: Murrayfield

Guinness PRO14 Dream Team 2019/20:

1 – Pierre Schoeman (Edinburgh) 2 – Joseph Dweba (Toyota Cheetahs) 3 – Leon Brown (Dragons) 4 – Scott Fardy (Leinster) 5 – Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh) 6 – Max Deegan (Leinster) 7 – Will Connors (Leinster) 8 – Bill Mata (Edinburgh) 9 – John Cooney (Ulster) 10 – Jaco van der Walt (Edinburgh) 11 – Duhan van der Merwe (Edinburgh) 12 – Stuart McCloskey (Ulster) 13 – Rey Lee-Lo (Cardiff Blues) 14 – Monty Ioane (Benetton Rugby) 15 – Blair Kinghorn (Edinburgh Rugby)

As three fixtures are due to take place on Friday evening, and the next three fixtures conclude Round 1 of the opening PRO14 2020/21 season, plenty of excitement awaits all rugby lovers. This opening round leaves rugby fanatics with numerous uncertainties as to which teams will be on top form this weekend.

GettyImages e

Writers Predictions:

With that being said, here are my opening PRO14 Round 1 predictions:

Zebre v Cardiff: Cardiff to win away from home by 10 points

Ulster v Benneton: Ulster to dominate and win by 20 points

Leinster v Dragons: Defending champions Leinster to win by 15 points

Scarlets v Munster: Munster to win away from home by 10 points

Connacht v Glasgow Warriors: Connacht to triumph by 10 points

Edinburgh v Ospreys: Edinburgh to win at home by 5 points

Are my predictions on point or do you have a better projection for this weekend’s PRO14 results? Let me know in the comments!

Stay tuned for the best and latest sports news and follow World In Sport on twitter @WorldinSport 

MRS6 scaled
Barry Scharneckhttps://mzansisrugby.wixsite.com/southafrica/
Die-hard South African Rugby supporter, writer, coach and the very occasional, player! Love talking all things sport and beating the odds, as well as running Mzansi's Rugby Academy, my non-profit rugby academy here in South Africa.
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Sports News

2020 World Series Preview/ Exciting Championship Reviews

A preview of the Dodger facing off against the Rays in the World Series. The Braves-Dodgers and Rays-Astros series wrap-up.

Estrada Headlines World Title Triple Header on October 23

Matchroom USA will return to North America for the first time in over 8 weeks with an exciting World championship Triple Header topped by pound-for-pound star Juan Francisco Estrada. Estrada defends his WBC and Ring magazine belts against Carlos Cuadras in a rematch of their 'Mexican War' which took place in 2017. Roman Gonzalez faces off against Israel Gonzalez for Chocolatito's WBA (Super) Super-Flyweight title in the co-main event. The Nicaraguan won the title by...

Van Dijk injury gives Klopp the opportunity to reinvent Reds

Van Dijk faces lengthy time on the sidelines As the news finally broke on Van Dijk’s injury, one could almost sense a collective sigh of despair from the Liverpool fans. Their worst fears were confirmed as official word from the player arrived on social media. After undergoing further scans, the Dutch defender stated the following, “I’m now fully focused on my recovery and will do everything I can to be back as quickly as possible. Despite...

Maro Itoje: The Future Captain of England Rugby

The name Oghenemaro Itoje does not sound too familiar to many rugby enthusiasts, yet, when it's shortened to Maro Itoje, every England Rugby fan has words of praise for the latest English rugby superstar. The lock forward weighs in at a solid 115 KG, with his height being a whopping 1.95m. The presence of Itoje in The English forward’s has allowed it to find its backbone, where Itoje leads the pack. After a disappointing 2019...

Spurs Quick Start Ambushed by Lanzini’s Hammer

A fast start by Spurs Peep!....peep!, it was not even a minute before the referee blew the whistle for the second time. 45 seconds was all it took for Spurs to go ahead in this game, a start that even the Roadrunner would appreciate. The Lily Whites continued their rapid and mind-numbing start to the season as they rushed into a generous lead, with Kane at the heart of it. The English national...

Crawford Brook Agreed for November 14 on ESPN

On the Lomachenko-Lopez broadcast last night on ESPN, Top Rank announced another big fight just 4 weeks away. Terence Crawford will defend his WBO Welterweight title against Britain's Kell Brook on regular ESPN. This is another Top Rank mega-clash that could have landed on Pay-per-view but now lands on free-to-air television. Although this is a good fight on paper, the question here is how competitive will this fight really be? Brook has not boxed at...

Observation from the Milan Derby

AC Milan met Inter Milan for the first Milan derby for the 2010-21 season.  The match was an enthralling one, ending in a competitive 2-1 win for the ‘I Rossoneri.’ Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored early in the match, 13th and 16th minute before Romelu Lukaku put pulled one back for Inter Milan in the 28th minute. These were the only goals of the game. The win for AC Milan was their first since 2016 against their...

Talking Points – Merseyside Derby: Everton 2: 2 Liverpool

Excitement and anticipation were in the air, as the Merseyside derby kicked off on Saturday. Coming into this game, a lot had been written about the decade-old dominance by the red part of Merseyside in this derby. Carlo Ancelotti, the Everton coach had reposed his faith in the team stating in the pre-match conference, stating how his team looked focussed and was in good spirits. While Jurgen Klopp, who was still smarting from...

How NRL Finals Week Three Went Down

All eyes now turn to the Grand Finals of the NRL and the NRLW, following the latest weekend of games. Storm v Raiders The Melbourne Storm met the Canberra Raiders in Brisbane, playing for a Grand Final that meant everything to both of them. The night got off to an eventful start as a major outage caused disruptions at the ticket gate, leaving 20,000 fans locked out at kickoff. On the field, Storm hit the accelerator from...

A Happy Ending to a Tumultuous NBA Season

The NBA season came to a conclusion last weekend with the Los Angeles Lakers led by Finals Most Valuable Player, LeBron James, defeating the Miami Heat four games to two.  It was the Lakers 17th NBA championship (although my son won argue that we should only count the Los Angeles titles (12) and not the Minneapolis ones (5)  But that's another article for another day. While it was not the way I had hoped with...
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x