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URC reduces SA teams' month-long Euro tours

NEWS: The full United Rugby Championship schedule for the 2024/25 campaign is now available thanks to the first-ever in-season launch of the following seasons’ fixtures.


As the current campaign comes down to the most competitive final round in the league’s history, supporters can now benefit from the earliest-ever release of fixtures which comes 114 days before kick-off.

As is the norm, URC fans across the world can download fixtures directly to their devices using this URC 24/25 link to ensure they never miss a kick-off no matter what time zone they are in.

The league will kick off on Friday, September 20 with Leinster visiting Edinburgh and Cardiff hosting Zebre Parma on the first day of the new season.

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In South Africa, derbies will headline the Saturday games with the Stormers and Bulls meeting in a blockbuster game in Cape Town, while in Durban the newly-crowned EPCR Challenge Cup champions, the Sharks, will take on the Lions in what is sure to be a highly entertaining encounter.


Not to be left out, Wales and Ireland will also host derby games with Dragons facing Ospreys and Munster battling it out with Connacht in Limerick. In Italy, Benetton will open their home fixture list against Scarlets while Ulster will host familiar rivals Glasgow Warriors in the opening round’s final fixture.

The sequence of home or away fixtures against non-Shield opponents is in year two. This means all fixtures from last season are reversed so that each team will complete their balance of home and away games against the same opponents over a two-year cycle. A full FAQ on fixtures is available by clicking here.

Additionally, the earlier generation of fixtures will assist all teams in their cross-hemisphere travel with improved access to different seat classes and cost efficiencies related to bookings made further in advance.

Martin Anayi, United Rugby Championship CEO, said: “Given the complexity of our scheduling we are thrilled to have our fixtures published earlier than ever before.


“Our fixture list is at the core of our entire league with fans, teams, broadcasters and media all setting their schedules to it and now we have set a new standard by delivering it while the current season is still in play.

“Our whole team is focused on making the United Rugby Championship the best league in the world and setting fan-friendly goals is key to that. Our clubs have been more engaged than ever in supporting this while our broadcast partners also play a crucial role in allowing the kick-off times to be set so far in advance.

“This weekend we will discover who has triumphed in the Race to Eight before the gripping drama of our play-offs takes centre stage. Now, no matter how the season ends fans can immediately look to next season’s fixtures to begin planning for another thrilling campaign.”

Due to calendar restrictions the outbound tours for South African teams will occur in blocks of three, two and one week(s). For teams travelling from the north, only five windows for touring exist in rounds 2-3, 5-6, 13-14, 15-16 and 17-18.

The league would also like to thank Dragons and Ospreys, who both share venues with football teams, to allow the scheduling work to begin ahead of the publication of the EFL fixture list. This continues to allow considerable amount of progress to occur much earlier than in previous years and to deliver earlier publishing of the fixtures.

Also, in the previous season, all derby games in Wales will occur in afternoon or late afternoon slots thanks to the support of all broadcasters involved.

URC Round One fixtures – 2024/25 Season

*Kick-offs are SA times

Friday, September 20

20.35: Cardiff v Zebre Parma
20.35: Edinburgh v Leinster

Saturday, September 21

15.45: Sharks v Lions
16.00: Dragons v Ospreys
18.15: Stormers v Bulls
18.30: Munster v Connacht
20.35: Benetton v Scarlets
20.45: Ulster v Glasgow Warriors

For the full fixture list, please click here.

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