BUCS Super Rugby is back with a bang in 2021-22, as league champions Durham look to defend their title from the 2019-20 season. Durham open their season with a trip to the Welsh capital to face Cardiff Met, who look to better their previous fourth place finish. Durham will need to find a replacement for back-row star Fitz Harding who since graduating now finds himself playing in Pat Lam’s Bristol Bears side.
Exeter will, once again, look to challenge for spot at the top of the table with England U20s winger Arthur Relton looking to take his hot U20 Six Nations try scoring form into BUCS Super Rugby. In 2019-20 Exeter had a 100% home winning record so a trip to the south-west is sure to be a tough test for any team. Up first for EURFC is a trip to Swansea, who have recruited 81-time-capped Wales international James Hook to their coaching team.
With several player graduating from Hartpury’s production line recently, including fly-half Nathan Chamberlain to Edinburgh, the most-recent BUCS Super Rugby Championship winners are sure to come out firing in the 2021-22 league season. They start by hosting Loughborough, then make the short trip down the road to face Bath.
The battle for the north-east happens in Round 5, as Northumbria host Durham. Ex-Northumbria outside backs Will Muir and Josh Hodge have recently worked their way into Premiership Rugby, will we see the next Poly star emerge in 2021-22?
Swansea host Cardiff in Round 6 as the first warm up of the season to the Welsh Varsity fixture, with league points and bragging rights on the line. The rematch will happen in Round 13 with Cardiff being the hosts.
The Cardiff derby is always a highlight of the BUCS Super Rugby calendar, as rivals Cardiff and Cardiff Met battle their city rivals. These matches take place in Round 2 and Round 11, which leads us into the Winter break.
For the first time in BUCS Super Rugby, the final round of fixtures will all kick off at the same time meaning there could be some suspense as teams await the final whistle to know their fate from the other fixtures around the league. Loughborough host Leeds Beckett, in the tie of the round, which could be a pivotal match as the teams fight for a top four place and a home tie in the Championship Quarter Final.
With every team in the league producing at least one player that has played professional rugby in the last 12 months, BUCS Super Rugby will continue to create a pathway for young players in the UK. Fast-flowing, big-hitting and high scoring – it’s going to be a thrilling season!