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Leinster will begin their defence of the Guinness PRO14 title with the visit of the Dragons to the RDS on Friday October 2. 

The fixtures for the 2020-21 season have been revealed just 11-days after the end of the previous campaign.

On the same night Ulster will entertain Benetton. 

The following day (Saturday October 3) will see Munster go to Scarlets, and Connacht play host to Glasgow Warriors. 

Now, Monday Night Rugby... where have we heard that before? The PRO14 seem to think it's a good idea anyway, with games to be played on Monday nights for the first time.

Munster will help break new ground in the competition when they welcome Cardiff Blues to Thomond Park on Monday October 26.

PRO14 chairman Dominic McKay said, "Playing on Monday nights provides the Guinness PRO14 with a unique platform in the rugby market and enables us to make the most of playing through such a busy time for our sport."

As flagged up last month, the 2020-21 season will begin with just 12 teams.

The league say that due to travel restrictions brought on by the pandemic, they don't foresee cross-border travel involving South African sides occurring before 2021.

Southern Kings were withdrawn from the league and have since entered liquidation. Talks are underway to have another South African side join the league in 2021.

They've also laid the groundwork for the potential future inclusion of SA Rugby's Super Rugby contingent of the Bulls, Stormers, Lions and Sharks.

A statement says early discussions are underway about expanding the South African footprint on the competition.

PRO14 statement: 

On 25 August, PRO14 Rugby acknowledged that under current international travel restrictions it is not possible for South African teams to fulfil Guinness PRO14 fixtures until 2021.

PRO14 Rugby welcomes the news that the South African Rugby Union (SA Rugby) has been able to arrange a domestic schedule for its professional teams and that this is the first step in the return of their teams to on-field action.

SA Rugby’s long-standing commitments are to field two teams in the Guinness PRO14 and in light of the withdrawal of the Southern Kings, discussions are on-going about fulfilling this agreement from 2021 using a replacement team from its current professional franchises.

Additionally, both PRO14 Rugby and SA Rugby are in early discussions about potentially expanding the tournament and deepening our partnership to include more South African franchises from 2021.

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Bulls Cheetahs Connacht Fixtures Guinness Pro14 Leinster Lions Monday Night Rugby Munster Pro 14 Pro14 Sharks South Africa Southern Kings Stormers Super Rugby Ulster

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