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Munster will be among the first clubs to travel to South Africa for a United Rugby Championship fixture. 

Competition organisers have confirmed the country will begin to host games, beginning with round 6.

The DHL Stormers, Emirates Lions, Vodacom Bulls and Cell C Sharks have effectively been based in Europe for the opening rounds of fixtures with South Africa on the UK's 'red' travel list.

However, that status was revoked last week meaning players would no longer have to isolate for 10-day periods upon their return.

Munster will be one of three teams bound for South Africa for the games taking place on November 27. Johan van Graan's team will play Vodacom Bulls at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria.

"This is a brilliant result, not only for the South African teams but for the league which now gets to make a tangible impression in this rugby heartland early in the season," said United Rugby Championship CEO Martin Anayi.

"Huge credit must go to the South African government, SA Rugby and the leadership figures within our clubs for managing to push through and provide reassurances for these fixtures to be played at their home venues in such a short space of time.

"Up until late last week, it look like a very tall order for this to occur, but now everyone in the league has been bolstered by this news and we will harness that enthusiasm to get ready for some real blockbuster fixtures in Rounds 6 & 7.”

The other South African-based games in round 6 see DHL Stormers play Zebre, Cell C Sharks go up against the Scarlets and Emirates Lions entertaining Cardiff.

The following week sees Munster go to Johannesburg to face Emirates Lions.

SA Rugby CEO Jurie Roux said, "Along with our four franchises, we are thrilled with the news.

"Planning to play our teams’ ‘home games’ in Europe was a necessary step in light of the chaos caused by the pandemic, but we are really grateful that we’ve progressed to a stage where we can now welcome our friends from the northern hemisphere back to South Africa.

"Combined with the news earlier in the week that limited spectators will be allowed into stadiums, we can now start planning for matches in Pretoria, Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town with fans in attendance.

"It’s a big step in the right direction.”

FRIDAY NIGHT RACING | Record-breaking jockey Colin Keane


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Cell C Sharks DHL Stormers Emirates Lions Munster South Africa United Rugby Championship Vodacom Bulls

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