Johannesburg, November 11 – Eight teams. Two pools. Four action-packed weekends. One brand-new trophy.
This weekend the all-new Autumn Nations Cup begins, the response to South Africa New Zealand and Australia opting out of their annual northern hemisphere autumn tours due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The competition begins on Friday evening when Ireland play Wales. England, France, Scotland and Italy, the other Six Nations contestants, are joined by Georgia and Fiji in the new event, ensuring an exotic blend of speed and power and contrasting styles.
All 16 matches will be broadcast live on SuperSport.
Each team will play the three others in its group once to determine the final group standings. The teams in first place in each group will then play each other, as will the teams in second, third and fourth, to determine the overall standings.
Pool A comprises England, Ireland, Wales and Georgia. Pool B is France, Scotland, Italy and Fiji.
The Autumn Nations Cup is packed with intriguing storylines and themes. Will England build on their Six Nations success to claim rugby’s newest trophy? Can Wales escape their dramatic losing habit? Have Scotland finally turned the corner after years in the doldrums? And what of France, who looked the most exciting of all teams in the Six Nations?
Georgia, meanwhile, bring serious scrummaging pedigree to the party, while Fiji will no doubt be living off the memories of a stirring 2019 World Cup campaign, when they gave both Australia and Wales fits.
November 13: Ireland v Wales.
November 14: Italy v Scotland.
November 14: England v Georgia.
November 15: France v Fiji.
November 21: Italy v Fiji.
November 21: England v Ireland.
November 21: Wales v Georgia.
November 22: Scotland v France.
November 28: Scotland v Fiji.
November 28: Wales v England.
November 28: France v Italy.
November 29: Ireland v Georgia.
December 5: Georgia v TBC.
December 5: Ireland v TBC.
December 5: Wales v TBC.
December 6: England v TBC.
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