South Africa will raise the curtain on the new Guinness PRO14 campaign when the Toyota Cheetahs host 2015 champions Glasgow Warriors in Bloemfontein on September 27.
All five unions within the Guinness PRO14 will host a game in Round 1 with Ulster and Ospreys also playing on opening night in Belfast as Benetton Rugby, Scarlets and Edinburgh complete the slate of home fixtures with all the action screened live across DAZN, eir Sport, FreeSports UK, Premier Sports, SuperSport, S4C and TG4.
For the first time ever, fans can plan their weekends right up until Round 20 with all kick-off times and dates laid out right to the penultimate weekend of the regular season.
The Toyota Cheetahs and Glasgow Warriors fixture will kick-off a mammoth 152 games schedule that will culminate in the toughest run-in yet, as local and international rivals set their sights on lifting the Guinness PRO14 trophy won by Leinster in May.
From Round 14 to 21 there will be only two weekend breaks in play as teams compete for precious placings in the Guinness PRO14 Final Series with seedings and Champions Cup qualification will all be up for grabs in a nine-week stretch. Details on the knock-out stages will be confirmed in due course.
The tribal derby games that sit at the heart of the Guinness PRO14’s intense rivalries are spread across eight rounds. This season, the calendar has allowed for the Welsh derby games to return to their traditional Boxing Day slot with Cardiff Blues facing Dragons in the east and Scarlets hosting Ospreys in the west.
The kick-off times for Round 21 will be set in early 2020 with a full round of derby matches providing added intrigue to the final day of the regular season.
The first five rounds of the campaign will take place during the Rugby World Cup to help avoid a clash with the Guinness Six Nations which has led to only one weekend in a direct overlap with Test matches throughout the season (R12).
Due to the time difference in Japan there will be no direct clashes with kick-off times in the Guinness PRO14 so fans will able to take in all of the rugby on offer during this period.
The number of traditional 15:00 kick-off times in the UK and Ireland has increased by 75% from the 2018/19 season and sees 30 games scheduled for that time slot in the new campaign.
Fans in the UK can watch every game live on Premier Sports with FreeSports UK and S4C providing live and deferred Free-To-Air coverage throughout the season each weekend. FreeSports UK will confirm all of their selections later this summer.
In the Republic of Ireland, eir Sport will screen every game supported by TG4’s Free-To-Air coverage while Super Sport continue their coverage of the Guinness PRO14 in South Africa.
To view all fixtures from R1-21 visit https://www.pro14rugby.org/