Deal Agreed For PRO12 Expansion
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A deal to expand the Pro12 to 14 teams from next season has been agreed according to BBC Scotland.
South African franchises the Cheetahs and the Southern Kings will join the northern hemisphere competition after their Super Rugby status was revoked.
The six-year deal is expected to benefit the league to the tune of an extra £6m per season from the South African Rugby Union and additional television income. All elements of the deal have apparently been agreed and, once legally ratified, could be formally announced next week.
The new Pro14 league will comprise two conferences of seven teams. Each conference will have one Scottish side, one South African side, one Italian side and two each from Wales and Ireland.
The winners of each conference will qualify automatically for the semi-finals, while the teams placed in second and third in each conference will be drawn together in play-offs for the remaining two semi-final places.