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The 2019–20 Pro14 (also known as the Guinness Pro14 for sponsorship reasons) is the nineteenth season of the professional rugby union competition originally known as the Celtic League. It is also the third season to be referred to as the Pro14 (the competition was named the Pro12 immediately prior to the addition of two South African teams).[1][2]

2019–20 Pro14
CountriesIreland Ireland
Italy Italy
Scotland Scotland
South Africa South Africa
Wales Wales
Date27 September 2019 – 20 June 2020
Matches played21
Attendance124,596
(average 5,933 per match)
Highest attendance12,712
Leinster v Edinburgh (11 October 2019)
Lowest attendance2,077
Kings v Cardiff Blues (28 September 2019)
Official website
www.pro14rugby.org

Fourteen teams are competing in this season — four Irish teams: Connacht, Leinster, Munster and Ulster; two Italian teams: Benetton and Zebre; two Scottish teams: Edinburgh and Glasgow Warriors; two South African teams: Cheetahs and the Southern Kings; and four Welsh teams: Cardiff Blues, Dragons, Ospreys and Scarlets.

TeamsEdit

Competition FormatEdit

League Stage

The fourteen teams are split into two conferences of seven teams, with each conference featuring two teams from Ireland and Wales plus one team from Italy, Scotland and South Africa.[3] To ensure a competitive balance, the teams are distributed approximately evenly between the conferences based upon their performance in the previous season.[4]

The regular season is made up of 21 rounds –
6 home and 6 away games against each team in their own conference
7 games, either home or away, against the teams in the other conference
2 additional regional derbies[5][6]

  • Each Irish team plays the two Irish teams in the other conference, one at home and one away
  • Each Welsh team plays the two Welsh teams in the other conference, one at home and one away
  • Each Italian team plays the Italian team in the other conference twice, home and away
  • Each Scottish team plays the Scottish team in the other conference twice, home and away
  • Each South African team plays the South African team in the other conference twice, home and away
League Play-Offs

The first-placed teams in both conferences are given byes to the semi-finals. The second and third placed teams in opposite conferences playoff in two quarter-finals for the two remaining semi-final places.[7]

Champions Cup Qualification

The South African teams cannot compete in the European Rugby Champions Cup. The top three eligible European teams in both conferences automatically qualify for following year's Champions Cup. The fourth ranked eligible teams in each conference playoff with the winners taking the seventh Champions Cup place.

Team changesEdit

IrelandEdit

Munster's backs coach Felix Jones and forwards coach Jerry Flannery left the province when their contracts expired in June 2019.[8] Graham Rowntree will join the province as their new forwards coach after the completion of his duties with Georgia at the 2019 Rugby World Cup.[9] Stephen Larkham, attack coach for the Australian national team, will also join the province as a senior coach ahead of the 2019–20 season.[10]

Long-serving Ulster captain Rory Best announced in April 2019 that he would retire from rugby after the 2019 Rugby World Cup.[11] Iain Henderson replaced Best as captain.[12]

ItalyEdit

ScotlandEdit

South AfricaEdit

Cheetahs announced in June 2019 that Hawies Fourie had replaced Franco Smith as their head coach.[13]

WalesEdit

Then-Crusaders assistant coach Brad Mooar was confirmed as Wayne Pivac's replacement as Scarlets head coach in December 2018, with Pivac leaving the region to take over from Warren Gatland as Wales' head coach after the 2019 Rugby World Cup.[14] Scarlets also appointed then-Highlanders defence coach and former London Irish head coach Glenn Delaney as their new defence coach, replacing the outgoing Byron Hayward.[15]

Dragons announced the departure of head coach Bernard Jackman in December 2018, with Ceri Jones replacing Jackman on an interim basis for the remainder of the 2018–19 season, before the region confirmed in May 2019 that Dean Ryan would join in the newly created director of rugby position.[16]

TableEdit

2019–20 Pro14 Table view · watch · edit · discuss
Conference A
Team P W D L PF PA PD TF TA TBP LBP PTS
1   Cheetahs 2 2 0 0 111 40 +71 16 6 2 0 10
2   Leinster 2 2 0 0 85 32 +53 12 4 2 0 10
3   Ulster 2 1 0 1 64 77 –13 9 10 2 0 6
4   Dragons 2 1 0 1 61 67 –6 7 9 1 0 5
5   Glasgow Warriors 2 0 0 2 35 73 –38 4 10 0 1 1
6   Zebre 2 0 0 2 43 102 –59 6 14 1 0 1
7   Ospreys 2 0 0 2 19 91 –72 2 13 0 0 0
Conference B
Team P W D L PF PA PD TF TA TBP LBP PTS
1   Munster 2 2 0 0 70 29 +41 9 2 2 0 10
2   Edinburgh 2 2 0 0 69 26 +43 8 3 1 0 9
3   Scarlets 2 2 0 0 43 31 +12 5 3 0 0 8
4   Connacht 2 1 0 1 51 23 +28 7 3 1 0 5
5   Cardiff Blues 2 1 0 1 42 46 –4 6 4 1 0 5
6   Southern Kings 2 0 0 2 47 62 –15 5 9 0 1 1
7   Benetton 2 0 0 2 32 73 –41 4 10 0 1 1
If teams are level at any stage, tiebreakers are applied in the following order -[17]
  1. number of matches won
  2. the difference between points for and points against
  3. the number of tries scored
  4. the most points scored
  5. the difference between tries for and tries against
  6. the fewest red cards received
  7. the fewest yellow cards received

Green background indicates teams that compete in the Pro14 play-offs, and also earn a place in the 2020–21 European Champions Cup
(excluding South African teams who are ineligible)

Blue background indicates teams outside the play-off places that earn a place in the 2020–21 European Champions Cup
Yellow background indicates the fourth-ranked eligible teams in each conference that play-off against each other for the seventh place in the 2020–21 European Champions Cup
Plain background indicates teams that earn a place in the 2020–21 European Rugby Challenge Cup.
(CH) Champions. (RU) Runners-up. (SF) Losing semi-finalists. (QF) Losing quarter-finalists. (PO) Champions Cup play-off winners. (q) Qualified for Pro14 play-offs. (Q) Qualified for Pro14 play-off semi-finals. (e) Cannot reach play-offs.

Match summaryEdit

Conference Rounds 1 to 21Edit

All times are local.

Round 1Edit

27 September 2019
19:05
(1 BP) Cheetahs   48–14   Glasgow Warriors
Report
Free State Stadium
Attendance: 4,528
Referee: Daniel Jones
27 September 2019
19:35
(1 BP) Ulster   38–14   Ospreys
Report
Kingspan Stadium
Attendance: 12,408
Referee: Marius Mitrea
28 September 2019
15:00
(1 BP) Munster   39–9   Dragons
Report
Thomond Park
Attendance: 10,878
Referee: Ben Blain
28 September 2019
16:00
(1 BP) Southern Kings   27–31   Cardiff Blues (1 BP)
Report
Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Attendance: 2,077
Referee: Mike Adamson
28 September 2019
17:15
Scarlets   18–10   Connacht
Report
Parc y Scarlets
Attendance: 6,415
Referee: Stuart Berry
28 September 2019
17:35
(1 BP) Benetton   27–32   Leinster (1BP)
Report
Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Attendance: 3,695
Referee: Ben Whitehouse
28 September 2019
19:35
(1 BP) Edinburgh   50–15   Zebre
Report
Murrayfield Stadium
Attendance: 4,221
Referee: George Clancy

Round 2Edit

4 October 2019
19:35
(1 BP) Glasgow Warriors   21–25   Scarlets
Report
Scotstoun Stadium
Attendance: 6,897
Referee: George Clancy
4 October 2019
19:35
(1 BP) Leinster   53–5   Ospreys
Report
RDS Arena
Attendance: 11,259
Referee: Stuart Berry
5 October 2019
15:00
Southern Kings   20–31   Munster (1 BP)
Report
Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Attendance: 3,115
Referee: Daniel Jones
5 October 2019
17:35
Cardiff Blues   11–19   Edinburgh
Report
Cardiff Arms Park
Attendance: 5,190
Referee: Frank Murphy
5 October 2019
17:00
(1 BP) Zebre   28–52   Dragons (1 BP)
Report
Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Attendance: 2,100
Referee: Sean Gallagher
5 October 2019
17:15
(1 BP) Cheetahs   63–26   Ulster (1 BP)
Report
Free State Stadium
Attendance: 4,582
Referee: Ian Davies
5 October 2019
19:35
(1 BP) Connacht   41–5   Benetton
Report
Galway Sportsgrounds
Attendance: 4,839
Referee: Rasta Rasivhenge

Round 3Edit

11 October 2019
18:15
(1 BP) Cheetahs   40–16   Munster
Report
Free State Stadium
Attendance: 4,814
Referee: Mike Adamson
11 October 2019
19:35
Dragons   14–38   Connacht (1 BP)
Report
Rodney Parade
Attendance: 3,257
Referee: Marius Mitrea
11 October 2019
19:35
(1 BP) Leinster   40–14   Edinburgh
Report
RDS Arena
Attendance: 12,712
Referee: Ben Whitehouse
12 October 2019
15:00
(1 BP) Scarlets   54–10   Zebre
Report
Parc y Scarlets
Attendance: 6,424
Referee: Rasta Rasivhenge
12 October 2019
15:00
Southern Kings   17–42   Ulster (1 BP)
Report
Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Attendance: 2,807
Referee: Craig Evans
12 October 2019
19:35
Glasgow Warriors   17–13   Cardiff Blues (1 BP)
Report
Scotstoun Stadium
Attendance: 6,708
Referee: Sean Gallagher
12 October 2019
19:35
(1 BP) Ospreys   24–20   Benetton (1 BP)
Report
Liberty Stadium
Attendance: 5,670
Referee: Frank Murphy

Round 4Edit

25 October 2019
19:35
Munster   v   Ospreys
25 October 2019
19:35
Ulster   v   Cardiff Blues
26 October 2019
15:00
Dragons   v   Glasgow Warriors
26 October 2019
17:15
Connacht   v   Cheetahs
26 October 2019
17:15
Zebre   v   Leinster
26 October 2019
19:35
Edinburgh   v   Scarlets

Round 5Edit

1 November 2019
19:35
Leinster   v   Dragons
1 November 2019
19:35
Ulster   v   Zebre
2 November 2019
15:00
Scarlets   v   Cheetahs
2 November 2019
17:15
Ospreys   v   Connacht
2 November 2019
19:35
Cardiff Blues   v   Munster

Round 6Edit

8 November 2019
19:35
Connacht   v   Leinster
8 November 2019
19:35
Edinburgh   v   Dragons
9 November 2019
15:00
Ospreys   v   Southern Kings
9 November 2019
17:15
Munster   v   Ulster
9 November 2019
Scarlets   v   Benetton


Play-offsEdit

The top side from each of the two conferences are given a bye to the semi-finals and have home advantage. Teams placed second and third in opposite conferences meet in the two quarter-finals to determine the other two semi-finalists with the teams ranked second having home advantage.

The play-offs are scheduled in the four weeks after the regular season has been completed.

Quarter-finals   Semi-finals   Pro14 Final
                   
       
     
     
   
     
     
 

FinalEdit

Play-off for the 7th Champions Cup placeEdit

South African teams cannot compete in the European Rugby Champions Cup as it is restricted to European teams. The top three eligible teams in each conference automatically qualify for the following year's Champions Cup. The seventh Champions Cup place is allocated to the winners of the playoff match between the fourth ranked eligible teams in each conference played at the home of the team with the most regular league points.

RefereesEdit

Attendances by clubEdit

  • Includes quarter-finals and semi-finals – the final is not included as it is held at a neutral venue. Due to the Conference A & B structure of 21 rounds in the Pro14, some teams played 10 league home games during the league stage, while others played 11. Does not include European Champions Cup play-off game.
Club Home
games
Total Average Highest Lowest % Capacity
  Benetton 1 3,695 3,695 3,695 3,695 55%
  Cardiff Blues 1 5,190 5,190 5,190 5,190 43%
  Cheetahs 3 13,924 4,641 4,814 4,528 10%
  Connacht 1 4,839 4,839 4,839 4,839 60%
  Dragons 1 3,257 3,257 3,257 3,257 37%
  Edinburgh 1 4,221 4,221 4,221 4,221 6%
  Glasgow Warriors 2 13,605 6,803 6,897 6,708 93%
  Leinster 2 23,971 11,986 12,712 11,259 65%
  Munster 1 10,878 10,878 10,878 10,878 42%
  Ospreys 1 5,670 5,670 5,670 5,670 27%
  Scarlets 2 12,839 6,420 6,424 6,415 43%
  Southern Kings 3 7,999 2,666 3,115 2,077 6%
  Ulster 1 12,408 12,408 12,408 12,408 68%
  Zebre 1 2,100 2,100 2,100 2,100 42%

Highest attendancesEdit

Date Game Stadium Attendance
11 October 2019 Leinster (h) v Edinburgh RDS Arena 12,712
27 September 2019 Ulster (h) v Ospreys Kingspan Stadium 12,408

End of Season AwardsEdit

PRO14 Dream TeamEdit

Pos Player Team
FB 15
RW 14
OC 13
IC 12
LW 11
FH 10
SH 9
N8 8
OF 7
BF 6
RL 5
LL 4
TP 3
HK 2
LP 1

Award winnersEdit

Award Winner
Players' Player of the Season
Young Player of the Season
Coach of the Season
Chairman's Award
Golden Boot
Top Try Scorer
Fairplay Award
Try of the Season

Leading scorersEdit

Note: Flags to the left of player names indicate national team as has been defined under World Rugby eligibility rules, or primary nationality for players who have not yet earned international senior caps. Players may hold one or more non-WR nationalities.

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Although Murrayfield's full capacity is 67,144, only the lower section of the East Stand, with a capacity of 12,464, is generally opened for Edinburgh fixtures.
  2. ^ Thomond Park's official capacity is 25,600 but can be expanded up to 26,276 with temporary seating.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "RaboDirect to pull sponsorship of Pro12". The Score. 23 August 2013. Archived from the original on 14 July 2014. Retrieved 5 June 2014.
  2. ^ "Pro12: Guinness named as league's new sponsor". BBC. 10 July 2014. Retrieved 10 July 2014.
  3. ^ "Pro14: Who's in? How will conferences work? What about derby matches?". BBC Sport. 1 August 2017. Retrieved 2 August 2017.
  4. ^ "Guinness PRO14 Championship Q&A". Pro14Rugby.org. 1 August 2017. Retrieved 30 May 2018.
  5. ^ Lloyd, Matt; Griffiths, Gareth (30 June 2017). "South African sides Cheetahs and Southern Kings set to join Pro12". BBC Sport Wales. Retrieved 5 July 2017.
  6. ^ Cummiskey, Gavin (7 July 2017). "Pro12 will be expanded to include two South African teams". The Irish Times. Retrieved 12 July 2017.
  7. ^ "Explained: how the 2017/18 Guinness Pro14 championship will actually work". Irish Independent. 2 August 2017. Retrieved 2 August 2017.
  8. ^ "Coaching Duo To Leave The Province". Munster Rugby. 7 May 2019. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
  9. ^ "Graham Rowntree To Join Munster Rugby". Munster Rugby. 4 June 2019. Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  10. ^ "Stephen Larkham To Join Munster Rugby". Munster Rugby. 14 June 2019. Retrieved 14 June 2019.
  11. ^ "Ireland captain Rory Best to retire from rugby after the World Cup". The42. 18 April 2019. Retrieved 9 May 2019.
  12. ^ "Henderson announced as Ulster captain". Ulster Rugby. 25 July 2019. Retrieved 26 July 2019.
  13. ^ "Hawies Fourie named new Cheetahs coach". Sport24. 27 June 2019. Retrieved 30 June 2019.
  14. ^ "Brad Mooar: Scarlets name Crusaders assistant as next head coach". BBC Sport. 3 December 2018. Retrieved 21 May 2019.
  15. ^ "Glenn Delaney: New Zealander named as Scarlets defence coach". BBC Sport. 21 May 2019. Retrieved 21 May 2019.
  16. ^ "Dean Ryan departs RFU to take up DOR role with Dragons". The42. 14 May 2019. Retrieved 14 May 2019.
  17. ^ Competition Rule 3.5 "Summary of Key Rules". Pro14. Retrieved 13 November 2013.

External linksEdit