2017 Super Rugby schedule: Five matches not to miss

Super Rugby
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

We've had a look at the Super Rugby draw and picked out five highlights.

1. Jaguares vs Reds, Round 5, Sunday March 26, 8:40am

The Jaguares will come to Australia for the first time. Photo: Getty ImagesThe Jaguares are in their second season of Super Rugby and will face the Aussie teams for the first time in 2017. Queensland will be the first cab off the rank in facing the Argentinians, with a trip to Buenos Aires in round five. The match is the second week of a tour, with the Reds facing 2016 finalists the Lions in Johannesburg a week earlier.

2.  Brumbies vs Reds, Round 7, Saturday April 8, 7:45pm

The Reds and Brumbies will clash. Photo: Getty ImagesMark this in your diaries, Canberra, because there’ll be plenty of familiar faces in action from both sides. Wallabies skipper and former Brumbies captain Stephen Moore will return to GIO Stadium for the first time since signing with the Reds for three seasons, a move that caused plenty of consternation under the old administration. Oh, and a bloke named George Smith will be an enemy in Canberra for the very first time. There’s sure to be plenty of heat in this one

3. Waratahs vs Rebels , Round 13, Sunday May 21, 4:05pm

The Waratahs and Rebels played out a classic in 2016. Photo: Getty ImagesThe Rebels pulled off one of the most pivotal results in their history at Allianz Stadium last year, with their first win at the venue. It will be a mark of their progress as to whether they can replicate the feat this season and the result could be critical in the finals race, depending on how things play out.

4. Waratahs vs. Force, Round 1, Saturday February 25, 7;45pm

The Force and Waratahs will play in Sydney in round one. Photo: Getty ImagesA new Force coach, two relatively new-look sides and a clash that has traditionally produced some upsets. A win against the Waratahs in Sydney in round one might seem far-fetched for the Force but if they could pull it off, it would certainly announce the arrival of Dave Wessels and a new generation of WA players. With Adam Coleman and Dane Haylett-Petty now Wallabies and Luke Morahan having spent plenty of time in the national camp, their composure might just be a little better than in the past, a little tweak that could go a long way.

5. Highlanders vs Chiefs, Round 1, Friday February 24, 5:35pm

The Highlanders and Chiefs played out a thriller in 2016. Photo: Getty ImagesThe first Kiwi derby of the season is set to be a cracker. The Highlanders and Chiefs played out two thrilling clashes in 2016, including a final round heart stopper that determined the makeup of the Super Rugby playoffs. If the form of the All Blacks is anything to go by, there won’t be much quality lost in New Zealand rugby next year and this game should set the tone.