New Zealand is looking to co-host this year's Rugby Championship with one of its southern hemisphere partners, New Zealand Rugby (NZR) boss Mark Robinson said, though South Africa has already indicated it is not interested in staging games. 

Last year's Rugby Championship (TRC) was held entirely in Australia due to the Covid-19 pandemic although it was rebranded the 'Tri-Nations' after world champions South Africa pulled out. 

South Africa, which is scheduled to host the Lions tour in July-August, does not want to be involved in co-hosting the four-nation TRC, Robinson told reporters in Wellington. 

Argentina beat New Zealand in last year's competition

"At this stage, they have signalled that they don't wish to host the Rugby Championship this year," he said. 

"Our view at the moment is there may be a great opportunity to do a co-hosting format. 

"We’ve got games the All Blacks are involved in we’d love to host in New Zealand, so that’ll be something we’re working towards. 

"But ultimately that’s a decision for SANZAAR to make with the feedback of its joint venture partners." 

Australia has already said it is pushing to host the entire Championship, which is likely to be staged in September-October. 


Leinster in a league of their own but true test awaits in Europe


Robinson said New Zealand was focused on hosting the 100th match against the Springboks, 100 years on from their first clash in Dunedin in 1921. 

He added that RNZ would wait another two to three weeks before making a decision on whether to push on with the Trans-Tasman Super Rugby competition with Australia's teams. 

The five-week tournament is scheduled to start on 14 May in Dunedin but quarantine requirements in New Zealand for travellers from Australia could make it untenable. 

New Zealand's Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson said earlier this month the country was close to allowing Australians to visit without quarantining on arrival. 

Follow Leinster v Toulon (5.30pm, Friday) and Munster v Toulouse (3pm, Saturday) in Champions Cup action via our live blogs on RTE.ie and the RTÉ News app or listen live on RTÉ 2fm's Game On and RTÉ Radio 1's Saturday Sport.