Fixtures for opening three rounds of Rainbow Cup unveiled

The tournament will kick off from 24th April
The tournament will kick off from 24th April

The Pro14 organisers have unveiled the fixtures for the opening three rounds of the Rainbow Cup competition that will involve 16 teams.

The tournament will kick off in the weekend of 24th April with the opening three rounds will be derby fixtures across Ireland, Italy, Scotland, South Africa and Wales.

The final three rounds will see cross fixtures with South African teams play their away fixtures in Europe subject to approval from the respective governments. However, no games will be played in South Africa this season.

The 16 teams will be divided into two groups of eight teams apiece with the top two teams set to face each other in the final on 19th June.

“Everyone is glad that we can now put some certainty into the rugby calendar in what has been an unpredictable period," said PRO14 Rugby Tournament Director David Jordan.

"Planning for a cross-hemisphere competition where the situation has been so fluid has provided many challenges, but we believe we have found a solution that is practical and safe to deliver a unique competition that supporters can get excited about.

“Throughout the Guinness PRO14 season, we have liaised with our unions and their governments to ensure we are meeting the conditions set out for elite sport to operate. We are very grateful for that support, without which a cross-border competition such as ours could not have taken place.”

The opening round will see Ulster and Leinster taking on Connacht and Munster respectively while Glasgow and Edinburgh will lock horns with Benetton and Zebre respectively. The Welsh derby games will see Ospreys and Dragons hosting Cardiff and Scarlets respectively.

Vodacom Bulls will take on Emirates Lions in their opening fixture while DHL Stormers will face Cell C Sharks.

Fixtures for Rainbow Cup:

R1 - Weekend of April 24, 2021

Ulster v Connacht

Leinster v Munster

Benetton v Glasgow Warriors

Edinburgh v Zebre Rugby Club

Ospreys v Cardiff Blues

Dragons v Scarlets

Vodacom Bulls v Emirates Lions

DHL Stormers v Cell C Sharks

R2 - Weekend of May 1, 2021 (EPCR Semi-Final Weekend)

DHL Stormers v Vodacom Bulls

Cell C Sharks v Emirates Lions

R2 - Weekend of May 8, 2021

Connacht v Leinster

Munster v Ulster

Zebre v Benetton

Glasgow Warriors v Edinburgh

Cardiff Blues v Dragons

Scarlets v Ospreys

R3 - Weekend of May 8, 2021

Vodacom Bulls v Cell C Sharks

Emirates Lions v DHL Stormers

R3 - Weekend of May 15, 2021

Munster v Connacht

Leinster v Ulster

Benetton v Zebre

Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors

Scarlets v Cardiff Blues

Dragons v Ospreys

Round 4: Weekend of May 29.

Round 5: Weekend of June 5.

Round 6: Weekend of June 12.

Final: Weekend of June 19.