MEDIA RELEASE - 28 September 2015

2016 Highlanders Draw

Super Rugby enters an exciting new era with the inclusion of teams from Argentina and Japan. Teams will play six matches within their own Conference, five against an Australasian Conference, four against a South African Conference and will have two byes across the 17-week Regular Season. The Highlanders will play six games against other New Zealand teams, all five Australian teams and four games against Africa 2 (which includes Kings, Lions, Sharks and the Argentinean Team). 

The Regular Season will be followed by a knockout Super Rugby Finals Series featuring eight teams; the four conference winners plus the three next highest-ranked teams from the Australasian Group and the next highest-ranked team from the South African Group. Conference winners will be seeded 1-4 based upon overall points from the Regular Season and the highest-ranked team will play at home in each match-up.

The Highlanders start their 2016 campaign in Auckland against the Blues before a 2015 Super Rugby Final rematch against the Hurricanes at home (venue TBC) and then the Lions the following week. Round three sees the reigning champions head to Sydney to play the Waratahs and then Melbourne to take on the Rebels before returning to New Zealand to play the Force in round six. The team will then head back over the ditch to play the Reds in Brisbane in round seven before their first bye in round 8, this is followed by two home games against the Sharks and Brumbies before heading up north to play the Chiefs. Round 12 holds the classic mainland derby where the Highlanders play the Crusaders at home leading into their second bye in round 13. In round 14 the Highlanders travel to Hurricanes territory and then the real travel begins with games against the Kings and the Argentinean team, in South African and Argentina respectively, before coming home to play their final game of the regular season in round 17 against the Chiefs. 


Preseason – Highlanders v Toulon – Saturday 6th February, Siu Sai Wan Stadium, Hong Kong

Preseason – Highlanders v Crusaders – Thursday 11th February 5.45pm, Fred Booth Park, Waimumu

Preseason – Highlanders v Waratahs – Friday 19th February 5.45pm, Queenstown Recreation Ground   

R2 – Highlanders v Hurricanes – Saturday 5th March 7.35pm

R3 – Highlanders v Lions – Saturday 12th March 7.35pm

R6 – Highlanders v Force – Friday 1st April 7.35pm

R9 – Highlanders v Sharks – Friday 22nd April 7.35pm

R10 – Highlanders v Brumbies – Saturday 30 April 5.15pm

R12 – Highlanders v Crusaders – Friday 13th May 7.35pm

R17 – Highlanders v Chiefs – Saturday 16th July 7.35pm

Please note that six games will be played at Forsyth Barr Stadium with the venue of the 7th game to be confirmed. Once all games have been assigned to a venue we will confirm which six are to be played at Forsyth Barr Stadium and which game will be at an alternate venue.

Click here to download 2016 Draw (all teams)


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