Super Rugby is the largest provincial rugby competition in the world. 15 teams from New Zealand, Australia and South Africa compete for the right to be named the best rugby province in the southern hemisphere.
Super Rugby started in 1993 and at that time there were only ten teams involved. Slowly over time teams were added until we reached the point we are at today – 15 teams evenly split between the three nations.
New Zealand has easily been the most successful country in terms of producing Super Rugby winners. New Zealand has produced 10 of the 18 Super Rugby champions, with the Canterbury Crusaders easily the most successful club with seven titles. The Auckland Blues are the only other Kiwi team to have won the title (three times). The Reds and the Brumbies are the only Australian teams to have won the Super Rugby title, with both notching two wins each. Since the Lions won the first Super Rugby title the only South African team to be successful was the Bulls who won in 2009 and 2010.
Super Rugby is split up into three conferences, with each conference containing the five teams from each country. Each team plays the other teams in their own conference twice in a season, while they play the teams from the other conferences just once. The top team from each conference plus the three wild card teams (teams with the next best winning records) qualify for the finals.
Players who wish to play representative rugby for New Zealand, Australia or South Africa must play for one of the Super Rugby franchises from that country.