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Crusaders and Highlanders to clash in opening match of 2023 'Super Round'

By Sam Smith
(Photo by Teaukura Moetaua/Getty Images)

Melbourne will once again play host to Super Rugby Pacific’s now annual ‘Super Round’, with the Crusaders and Highlanders set to square off in the opening game of the weekend.


Set to take place in the first weekend of March – when both NZ and Australia commemorate Anzac Day – all 12 Super Rugby sides will converge on AAMI Park for a blockbuster six-game event.

Unlike this year, there will be a number of New Zealand and Australian derbies played over the weekend, as well as two trans-Tasman clashes between the Rebels and Hurricanes, and Blues and Brumbies.

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The second iteration of Super Round Melbourne will be more than just rugby with event organisers planning additional music, entertainment, food offerings and interactive experiences to be held around the stadium for fans to enjoy.

Events celebrating the cultures that make up the Super Rugby Pacific competition will be held across the three days, with a record number of South Pacific fans expected to travel to Melbourne to experience a unique weekend of rugby.

Sanzaar CEO Brendan Morris stated, “It is fantastic that based on last year’s success we are heading to Melbourne once again for Super Round. The concept of having all the matches at one venue, in one city, over a single weekend is a big attraction for the tournament and is appealing to our fans.

“We are building on the lessons of last year to deliver an even bigger Super Round in March next year in Melbourne. The teams and players are all focussed on Super Round and are all enthusiastically behind the event which showcases some of the best rugby players in the world, and all that is good about rugby in the Pacific.”


The first-ever Super Round saw more than 30,000 rugby fans from across Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands come to AAMI Park over the 2022 ANZAC weekend. Organisers are expecting bigger crowds in 2023 with Super Round Melbourne scheduled before the start of the 2023 AFL and NRL seasons and with New Zealand borders open. The 2022 edition recorded wins to the Chiefs, Blues, Hurricanes, Brumbies and Crusaders providing three days of world-class rugby for passionate rugby fans and general sports enthusiasts in Melbourne.

Public tickets for the event will go on sale Wednesday September 28.

Super Round 2023 schedule:

Friday 3 March 2023
Crusaders v Highlanders, 6.00pm AEDT / 8.00pm NZDT
Melbourne Rebels v Hurricanes, 8.10pm AEDT / 10.10 pm NZDT


Saturday 4 March 2023
Moana Pasifika v Chiefs, 5.05pm AEDT / 7.05PM NZDT
Fijian Drua v Waratahs, 7.45pm AEDT / 9.45PM NZDT

Sunday 5 March 2023
Blues v Brumbies, 2.00pm AEDT / 4.00pm NZDT
Force v Reds, 4.30pm AEDT / 6.30pm NZDT


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