Brisbane gets the nod - reports
NEWS: Southern Hemisphere sources report that arrangements are now in place that allows the Rugby Championship to play to a conclusion.
Contrary to recent speculation, according to the New Zealand Herald, the competition will not be moved en bloc to Europe or South Africa.
The All Blacks will instead travel to Australia to play the third Bledisloe Cup match in Perth next weekend.
They will then be joined in Queensland by the travelling South African and Argentinian teams for the rest of the Rugby Championship.
New Zealand’s governing body received fierce criticism for pulling out of last weekend’s scheduled trip to Western Australia’s capital.
NZ Rugby cited uncertainty surrounding whether Europe, Queensland or South Africa would host the four-nation tournament following outbreaks of the Delta variant as the rationale for not travelling.
Rugby Australia Chief Executive Andy Marinos responded with a strong statement which accused NZ Rugby of a lack of consultation.
With New Zealand’s borders shut amidst a nationwide lockdown due to the most recent community outbreak, the All Blacks now face 15 weeks away from home.
Australia’s Fox Sports describes the decision to host the remainder of the tournament in Queensland as “a coup for Australian rugby.”
They go on to credit Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk as “moving heaven and earth” to secure the championship before suggesting an official announcement will be made on Tuesday.
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Rugby Australia is reported to be hopeful that the Perth Test will be played on either September 3 or 4 but the date is yet to be finalised due to a possible AFL clash.
This solution means the Springboks will play four tests – including their historic 100th Test against New Zealand – Down Under.
Fox Sports claim that four double-headers will take place between September 10 and October 3, played in Brisbane, Townsville and on the Gold Coast.
Following the Rugby Championship, all four nations head north to Europe for their end of year tours.
Sources: RugbyPass, NZ Herald & Fox Sport