October 10, 2023

Sky Super Rugby Aupiki format extended

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Sky Super Rugby Aupiki players will receive increased support under an enhanced competition for 2024 and 2025 which brings higher pay, more games and a longer pre-season.

“It's great to see Sky Super Rugby Aupiki making further progress in 2024 with a more balanced home and away format. This is a step in the right direction for an exciting competition which is providing a great platform for growing the women’s elite game and attracting more supporters,” said Chiefs Rugby Club General Manager Commercial & Marketing, Meghan Fleming.

“It’s really pleasing to see that players will be getting the support they need to be at their best when the competition kicks off - great for the quality of the game and great for the experience of fans.”

New Zealand Rugby (NZR) unveiled the new format today which will provide a six week round robin competition with the two top teams playing the final. In addition, players will be supported in a longer pre-season training programme.

Each club will contract 30 players (an increase of two players per squad) who will take part in an eight-week individual preparation window before a four-week pre-season that will include two matches. Non-Black Ferns players who are contracted will see payments more than doubling to a minimum of $17,000 in recognition of the longer season.

The extended format reflects the combined efforts of the Super Rugby Clubs, NZR and the Rugby Players Association who are committed to ensuring the elite game is sustainable and keeps providing a pathway for players to be Black Ferns.

“Our Sky Super Rugby Aupiki players and coaching staff deserve huge accolades for leading the women's game in this country. It’s important we don’t stop here though. We know the game is growing in appeal, so we must build on this opportunity and ensure we have a long term strategy in place to keep the momentum going.

“All clubs are committed to building strong commercial partnerships so we can make the investments needed to grow the Sky Super Rugby Aupiki game.

“We all want this competition to continue to thrive, to inspire our girls and women to play rugby, be compensated fairly, and develop great Black Ferns players,” said Fleming.

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Sky Super Rugby Aupiki format extended