Rugby Union: New tournament announced for Australia
SYDNEY (AFP) - Australia will introduce a new domestic rugby competition in 2014 similar to South Africa's Currie Cup to help develop more elite players, officials announced on Tuesday, Dec 10, 2013.
The National Rugby Championship will feature eight to 10 teams from across the country with Australian Rugby Union chief Bill Pulver saying it will offer "the opportunity to introduce innovative rules to the game".
"This new competition will be a tremendous opportunity for rugby fans to support teams from across the country in a local competition that we hope will rival New Zealand's ITM Cup and South Africa's Currie Cup at a time of year when there is little local rugby being played," he said.
The tournament is designed to provide players with a pathway between club and Super 15 rugby, and will be held annually at the end of the Super and club seasons from August to October.