The Swire Shipping Fijian Drua’s spot in Super Rugby Pacific has been secured until 2030.
This has been confirmed by New Zealand Rugby and Rugby Australia following a new joint-venture agreement in Sydney today.
NZR Chief Executive Mark Robinson and RA Chief Executive Andy Marinos each welcomed the new partnership, which will extend the existing joint venture from 2024 to 2030, as a significant moment for professional club rugby in the Pacific region.
Robinson says the agreement represented a unified commitment to the Super Rugby Pacific format.
He says this long-term agreement provides certainty for players, coaches, fans, sponsors and broadcast partners and it solidifies their joint commitment to ensuring Super Rugby Pacific is the most entertaining, innovative, and fan-focused cross-border club competition in the world.
Robinson adds they have charted a new path with the introduction of Moana Pasifika and the Fijian Drua this year, and having all 91 games played in regional time zones, and believe they have entered an exciting new era for rugby in the Pacific region.
The new agreement will usher in a new governance model for Super Rugby Pacific with the establishment of a nine-person board, which will include an independent Chair, four independent Directors, and one representative each from NZR, RA, the New Zealand Rugby Players Association, Rugby Union Players’ Association.
The Board will oversee the competition with the purpose of a clear, unbiased focus on governance, and the creation of a consistent look and feel across the competition.
The new Board will also have a mandate to explore the creation of an integrated women’s competition structure in order to build on the success of Super W in Australia and Sky Super Rugby Aupiki in New Zealand.
The agreement confirms the current Super Rugby Pacific competition format, however, the new board will continue to look at options to adapt and adjust over time.