New Highlanders signing Solomon Alaimalo will play for a new team in Super Rugby and at provincial level in 2021.
|Premiership / Round 10|
|3||Bay of Plenty||31|
|Championship / Round 10|
Watch some of New Zealand’s finest domestic rugby union teams compete for the Mitre 10 Cup.
The Mitre 10 Cup is the premier domestic rugby union competition in New Zealand. It’s contested between 14 teams who represent their provinces. These teams are divided equally between the Premiership Division and the Championship Division.
Rugby’s Mitre 10 Cup was launched back in 2006 when the Air New Zealand Cup replaced the National Provincial Championship, which had been in place since 1976. As a result, it became New Zealand rugby’s first ever professional rugby competition. Since then, the competition has been named after several sponsors. Although it continued as the Air New Zealand Cup until 2009, it was known as the ITM Cup until 2016 when it became the Mitre 10 Cup.
Mitre 10 rugby has existed in various forms over the years, but the competition has kept the same format since 2013. Since then, the Mitre 10 Cup has contained two divisions and a promotion/relegation system. Each of these divisions contains seven teams and each team plays everyone in their own division and four teams in the other division. The purpose of this is to maintain some traditional provincial rivalries. As a result, certain unions in the competition still play for inter-union trophies. For example, Wellington face Auckland for the Fred Lucas Memorial Trophy.
At the end of the divisional stage of the Mitre 10 Cup, two semi-finals also take place in the Premiership and Championship respectively, with the first-placed team taking on the fourth-placed team and the second-placed team facing the third-placed team. The two winners then play the final at the home ground of the top surviving seed. The winner of the Premiership is crowned champions, while the lowest-ranked team is relegated to the Championship. The winner of the Championship is promoted to the Premiership.
The 14 rugby teams that compete in the Mitre 10 Cup are all professional teams that represent their union. As every team is each union’s top representative, the tournament is scheduled so that players who compete in Super Rugby can play.
In the history of Mitre 10 rugby, Canterbury have been the most successful side. They’ve won the title on nine occasions, including six titles in a row. Other teams who have won the tournament include Tasmania and Auckland (two each) and Waikato and Taranaki (once each). Wellington have reached the final six times, but they’ve been beaten on each occasion.
Read on to learn even more about Mitre 10 rugby. You can see all the latest news, fixtures and rugby union Mitre 10 cup results right here.
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