Sanzaar has announced that the 2017 Super Rugby semi-final draw will be 'pre-determined' in a change from last year.
Last year, the lowest seed hosted the highest seeded team to qualify, while the second-lowest seed played host to the second-highest seed. However, the semi-final host teams will now be the highest ranked winners from the respective quarter-finals, as indicated below.
Semi-final 1: Winner QF 1 vs Winner QF 4
Semi-final 2: Winner QF 2 vs Winner QF 3
Sanzaar also confirmed the full fixture list for the 2017 tournament, with amendments having been made to several kick-off times and the venues for matches that were previously 'to be announced'.
The tournament kicks off on 23 February, with the Rebels hosting the Blues at AAMI Park in Melbourne. The fixture list will see two matches played in the Pacific Islands when the Chiefs take on the Crusaders in Suva on 19 May, while the Blues will face the Reds in Apia on 2 June.
Sanzaar also reconfirmed the qualification process for the finals. As in 2016, the teams winning places in the quarter-finals will be: the four conference winners – who will host quarter-final matches; and four wild card teams – determined by the tournament rules and final conference positions. The teams will be ranked 1-8 based on the final number of competition points attained and the following order :
Rank 1-4: Conference winners determined by final number competition points
Rank 5-8: Wild cards determined by final number competition points .
The quarter-final draw will be:
Quarter-final 1: 1 vs 8
Quarter-final 2: 2 vs 7
Quarter-final 3: 3 vs 6
Quarter-final 4: 4 vs 5
Photo: Martin Hunter/AFP Photo