All set for ‘rising stars’ to collide in inaugural U20 Rugby Championship

Dylan Coetzee
U20 stars from New Zealand, Argentina, Australia and South Africa with Rugby Championship trophy.

U20 stars from New Zealand, Argentina, Australia and South Africa with Rugby Championship trophy.

The first-ever U20 Rugby Championship is set to kick off this week on the Sunshine Coast in Australia, beginning on Thursday, May 2.

It is a groundbreaking moment for developmental rugby in the southern hemisphere, who have struggled compared to their northern counterparts in the U20 World Championship, with New Zealand the last team below the equator to win it back in 2017.

The northern dominance could be owed to the annual U20 Six Nations and now SANZAAR are excited to get going with their own youth tournament.

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Exciting times ahead

The competition with have three matchdays all of which will be double headers and once the games are complete the team with the most points will be crowned champions.

SANZAAR CEO Brendan Morris stated: “After months of preparation and planning it is wonderful that we are now just a few days away from kick-off. The Sunshine Coast Stadium is ready to host the Championship and with free entry for the public we look forward to welcoming everyone.”

“SANZAAR encourages rugby fans to support the Championship and the amazing young talent that will be on display. The three match days, all with double-headers, will feature the stars of the future and perhaps the next generation of Wallabies, All Blacks, Springboks and Pumas.”

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Hosting area

The Sunshine Coast Council was eager to get involved in the hosting of the tournament as they look to align themselves with elite sporting events.

Sunshine Coast Council Mayor Rosanna Natoli said: “The Sunshine Coast was keen to show support for Rugby Union by hosting this new competition.

“We have a long-term strategy to attract elite sports, athletes and national teams to train, stay and play here on our Sunshine Coast in the lead up to key events like the British & Irish Lions Tour in 2025, two Rugby World Cups – men’s in 2027 and women’s in 2029 and the Olympic and Paralympic Games Brisbane 2032.

“Hosting the SANZAAR TRC U20 championship marks a crucial investment in developing young players, providing them with a clear pathway into senior and international rugby.

“It’s a unique opportunity for these players to gain valuable experience and adapt to the demands of top-level competition. It is also a chance for coaches, team management and officials to grow and learn alongside these rising stars.

“I encourage rugby fans to join in on the action on Thursday, May 2, Tuesday, May 7 and Sunday, May 12 for three thrilling double-header match rounds at Sunshine Coast Stadium.

“Come and witness the best under-20 talent from New Zealand, South Africa, Argentina and Australia battling it out on the field.”

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