Fans across the country will get to experience the excitement of DHL Super Rugby Pacific with six pre-season matches scheduled across New Zealand in February 2023.
The pre-season campaign kicks off on Friday February 10 when the Highlanders host the Crusaders in Weston (15km south of Oamaru), with the Farmlands Cup on the line.
The Crusaders are the reigning Farmlands Cup champions after beating the Highlanders 28-26 in a thriller in Temuka in 2021. Last year’s pre-season fixture was not a Farmlands Cup as it was played behind closed doors due to Covid-19 however the Highlanders did prove victorious (20-19) on a very wet and muddy track and will be keen to replicate the success of 2022.
Moana Pasifika host the Gallagher Chiefs on the same day (Friday 10 February) at Mount Smart Stadium. It will be a repeat of Moana Pasifika’s inaugural pre-season game in 2022 where they lost 61-7 to the Gallagher Chiefs. With a season of DHL Super Rugby Pacific under their belt, Moana Pasifika will be out to improve on their 2022 pre-season effort against the Gallagher Chiefs and make an early statement.
2023 Super Rugby preseason schedule
- Highlanders v Crusaders, Friday 10 February, 5.30pm, Weston Park, Oamaru
- Moana Pasifika v Gallagher Chiefs, Friday 10 February, 4.30pm, Mt Smart Stadium (Field 4), Auckland.
- Blues v Hurricanes, Saturday 11 February, 2.30pm, Waitematā RFC
- Hurricanes v Crusaders, Friday 17 February, 5pm, Levin Domain
- Highlanders v Moana Pasifika, Friday 17 February, 6pm, Queenstown Recreation Centre, Queenstown
- Gallagher Chiefs v Blues, Friday 17 February, 6pm, Navigation Homes Stadium, Pukekohe (LIVE ON SKY SPORT)
The action continues to heat up the very next day with the Blues hosting the Hurricanes in the ‘Blues Footy Fest’ at Waitematā Rugby Football Club on Saturday 11 February. Fans will get to enjoy a triple-bill with the ‘Blues Cup’ ‘Game of Three Halves’ between North Harbour, Northland and Auckland development players, the first nib Blues women open training session, followed with the Blues men vs Hurricanes pre-season match. Gates open at 11am.
The following Friday (17 February) is shaping up to be just as action-packed, with three more pre-season games taking place.
First up, the Hurricanes lay out the welcome mat to the Crusaders at Levin Domain at 5pm. In the deep south, the Highlanders will host Moana Pasifika at Queenstown Recreation Ground at 6pm, in a re-match of a game which was cancelled by Covid-19 in 2022.
Finally, the Gallagher Chiefs host the Blues at Navigation Homes Stadium in Pukekohe. The All Blacks game will be played in three 30-minute segments and is preceded by a Game of Three Halves between Sky Super Rugby Aupiki sides the nib Blues, Chiefs Manawa and the Waratahs from Australia’s Super W competition.