New Zealand Rugby and Rugby Australia have unveiled a revised Super Rugby Pacific 2022 draw, which will see the six New Zealand-based teams and six Australian-based teams play their opening eight matches on different sides of the Tasman due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.
The revised draw maintains the same key elements of the original draw with each team to play a total of 14 matches during the regular season, 11 round-robin fixtures plus three additional rivalry matches which will see each team play a home and away series against three other teams.
The Hurricanes Super Rugby Pacific campaign will kick off on the road against the Crusaders, Saturday 19 February in Christchurch, before heading to Eden Park to take on the Blues on Sunday, 27 February.
In three back-to-back rounds, the Hurricanes will play host to the Highlanders on Saturday, 5 March, followed by Moana Pasifika, Saturday, 12 March and the Chiefs, Saturday, 19 March - all at Sky Stadium, Wellington.
The beginning of the trans-Tasman matches will see all 12 clubs converge on Melbourne in Round 10 for a Super Round that will feature a unique celebration of the ANZAC spirit. The Hurricanes will take on the Reds, Saturday 23 April.
Family friendly afternoon kick-offs are a feature of the draw with the Hurricanes welcoming two afternoon matches at Sky Stadium against Moana Pasifika in round four and the Fijian Drua in round 12.
Hurricanes CEO Avan Lee said he was happy with the revised draw.
“This revised draw will again feature popular derby games as well as fixtures against Australian teams, and we’re happy to bring our fans a couple of afternoon matches too. This will be a fantastic opportunity for our youngest fans to experience Super Rugby Pacific.”
"We’re also looking forward to welcoming the Highlanders, Moana Pasifika and the Chiefs in three back-to-back home matches,” said Lee.
NZR General Manager Professional Rugby & Performance Chris Lendrum said it was great to be in a position to provide teams, fans and partners certainty ahead of the 2022 season.
“We are thrilled that we’ve been able to maintain the integrity of the draw with the key elements of Super Rugby Pacific remaining despite the disruptions caused by COVID-19. We believe the full round-robin schedule, the Super Round, bye rounds, Themed Rounds and playoffs were all critical to retain in revising the schedule.
“I’d like to thank Rugby Australia, all 12 Super Rugby clubs, and our fans and partners, for their understanding, patience, and flexibility in ensuring the competition is locked and loaded for 2022.
Themed rounds celebrating a Women in Rugby Round, Culture Round, and Heritage Round will also remain on the schedule with confirmation of new dates and other details to be announced early next year.
THE HURRICANES FULL SUPER RUGBY PACIFIC DRAW: (ALL TIMES NZT)
RD1: Crusaders v Hurricanes, Saturday, 19 February, Christchurch, 7:05pm
RD2: Blues v Hurricanes, Sunday 27 February, Auckland, 3:35pm
RD3: Hurricanes v Highlanders, Saturday, 5 March, Wellington, 7:05pm
RD4: Hurricanes v Moana Pasifika, Saturday 12 March, Wellington, 4:35pm
RD5: Hurricanes v Chiefs, Saturday 19 March, Wellington, 7:05pm
RD6: Moana Pasifika v Hurricanes, Friday 25 March, Auckland, 7:05pm
RD8: Hurricanes v Crusaders, Friday 8 April, Wellington, 7:05pm
RD9: Highlanders v Hurricanes, Saturday 16 April, Dunedin, 7:05pm
RD10: Hurricanes v Reds, Saturday 23 April, Melbourne, 9:45pm (Super Round)
RD11: Brumbies v Hurricanes, Sunday, 1 May, Canberra, 4:00pm
RD12: Hurricanes v Fijian Drua, Sunday, 8 May, Wellington, 3:35pm
RD13: Waratahs v Hurricanes, Saturday, 14 May, TBC, 9:45pm
RD14: Hurricanes v Rebels, Saturday 21 May, Wellington, 7:05pm
RD15: Force v Hurricanes, Saturday, 28 May, Perth, 12:00am
SUPER RUGBY PACIFIC AT A GLANCE
12 teams: Moana Pasifika, Fijian Drua, Blues, Chiefs, Hurricanes, Crusaders, Highlanders, Waratahs, Reds, Force, Brumbies, Rebels
14 regular season matches = 11 round-robin matches + 3 rivalry matches
One bye round per team (all byes in Rounds 7, 8 & 9)
Super Round in Round 10, Friday-Sunday 22-24 April @ AAMI Park Melbourne Park.
Season Length: 18 weeks = 15-week regular season + three-week playoff series
Total Matches: 91
8-team playoffs format - QFs: June 3-5; SFs: 10-11 June; FINAL 18 June.