SA Rugby and SuperSport announced on Friday that they will be broadcasting all 16 preparation fixtures live when the local rugby season kicks off next weekend.
As a result, the fixtures have been amended. Eight local unions will each play four matches – two at home and two away – from Friday, 26 February until Sunday, 28 March.
The series of warm-up encounters has been specifically designed by the Rugby Department of SA Rugby and the competing unions to meet teams’ high-performance needs against the landscape of the COVID-19 pandemic, and to prepare the players for the season ahead.
Instead of weekly encounters, matches will be played on a ten-day cycle to manage COVID testing protocols. The eight teams have been split into two groups and will play cross-pool matches.
Pool A consists of the Vodacom Bulls, Lions, Griquas and Cheetahs, and they will play the four sides in Pool B, namely the Sharks, Stormers, Pumas and Eastern Province.
Updated preparation series fixtures (home teams named first, all matches live on SuperSport)
Friday, 26 February
19h00: Lions v NNC Pumas
Saturday 27 February
17h15: DHL Stormers v Toyota Cheetahs
Sunday 28 February
15h00: Vodacom Bulls v Eastern Province
17h15: Cell C Sharks v Tafel Lager Griquas
Tuesday 9 March
16h45: Toyota Cheetahs v Cell C Sharks
19h00: NNC Pumas v Vodacom Bulls
Wednesday 10 March
16h45: Eastern Province v Lions
19h00: Tafel Lager Griquas v DHL Stormers
Friday 19 March
16h45: NNC Pumas v Toyota Cheetahs
19h00: Vodacom Bulls v DHL Stormers
Saturday 20 March
14h00: Eastern Province v Tafel Lager Griquas
16h15: Lions v Cell C Sharks
Friday 26 March
19h00: Cell C Sharks v Vodacom Bulls
Saturday 27 March
15h00: Tafel Lager Griquas v NNC Pumas
17h15: DHL Stormers v Lions
Sunday 28 March
15h00: Toyota Cheetahs v Eastern Province