Sanzar announce 2013 Rugby Championship fixtures
The All Blacks will open their Rugby Championship defence with a tough assignment against arch-rivals Australia in Sydney on August 17, the tournament’s governing body SANZAR announced Tuesday.
The New Zealanders were undefeated in last year’s competition, which was known as the Tri-Nations before Argentina joined in 2012, and remain the top-ranked team in international rugby.
But England proved in December that the world champions are not invincible and the Wallabies, who will be battle-hardened after hosting the British and Irish Lions, will gunning for an upset.
Argentina, who are yet to win a Rugby Championship Test, but managed a 16-16 draw against South Africa in August, open their campaign against the Springboks in Bloemfontein.
The competition will feature six rounds.
Fixtures for the 2013 Rugby Championship (kick-off times yet to be confirmed).
Round 1 (Aug 17) Sydney Australia v New Zealand Bloemfontein South Africa v Argentina
Round 2 (Aug 24) Wellington New Zealand v Australia Mendoza Argentina v South Africa
Round 3 (Sept 7) Brisbane Australia v South Africa Hamilton New Zealand v Argentina
Round 4 (Sept 14) Perth Australia v Argentina Auckland New Zealand v South Africa
Round 5 (Sept 28) Cape Town South Africa v Australia La Plata Argentina v New Zealand
Round 6 (Oct 5) Johannesburg South Africa v New Zealand Rosario Argentina v Australia
Note: Teams awarded four points for a win, two for a draw, and one for scoring at least four tries in a match or losing by fewer than eight points.