PRO14: Quarterfinals & Semifinals
CONFIRMED: Five of the six teams who have qualified for the PRO14 Final Series are previous champions while Benetton Rugby’s presence marks the first time that an Italian club has qualified for the knock-out stages.
Conference A will be represented by Glasgow Warriors (1), Munster Rugby (2) and Connacht Rugby (3) while Conference B will be represented by defending PRO14 champions Leinster Rugby (1), Ulster Rugby (2) and Benetton Rugby (3).
How it happened:
Glasgow Warriors and Munster went into the final round knowing top spot in Conference A was on the line as they faced derby rivals Edinburgh and Connacht, respectively.
Dave Rennie’s men, who had a three-point advantage at the summit going into the game, secured their home Semi-Final place with a dominant 34-10 win over Edinburgh.
Tries from Sam Johnson, Ali Price, Niko Matawalu and Tommy Seymour got the job done in style at Scotstoun Stadium, meaning Munster could not overhaul them at the top.
But despite Munster being unable to topple Glasgow, tries from Tadhg Beirne, Mike Haley and JJ Hanrahan saw the Irish province finish the regular season with a 27-14 win against Connacht for a spot.
Kevin Crowley’s Benetton side made history by becoming the first Italian side to reach the Final Series.
Benetton’s challenge in Conference B has been ever-present all season, but a run of three straight PRO14 games without a win piled the pressure on in the final round of games.
They still knew a bonus-point win would guarantee their place in the knockout stage, though, and duly delivered as they saw off Italian rivals Zebre 25-11 at Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi.
Saturday, May 4
Munster Rugby v Benetton Rugby
Ulster Rugby v Connacht Rugby
Friday, May 17
Glasgow Warriors v Ulster/Connacht
Saturday, May 18
Leinster v Munster/Benetton