Super Rugby Pacific: Moana Pasifika book mid-week fixtures to make up postponements

Two of Moana Pasifika's postponed Super Rugby Pacific matches have been rescheduled as mid-week fixtures.

The newcomers will face the Blues on Tuesday, March 29 at Mt Smart Stadium, before playing them again four days later at Eden Park in round seven of the competition.

They'll make up their match against the Chiefs at FMG Stadium at Hamilton on Tuesday, April 12, then again at Mt Smart on April 16 in round nine.

In between, they will have a bye week in round eight to help reduce some of the impact of the quick turnaround between games.

"We acknowledge the short turnarounds are not ideal, but we believe we've reached the best possible outcome in terms of fairness and player welfare," says NZ Rugby's general manager professional rugby and performance.

"The basic principle was to reschedule the matches in weeks where the Blues or Chiefs were already playing Moana Pasifika. This means the teams will play each other twice in a week, but they will all have the same rest period between matches."

Moana Pasifika have played just once in their inaugural season due to COVID-19 outbreaks, losing 33-12 to the Crusaders at Dunedin last Friday.

Their scheduled match against the Hurricanes on Saturday has also been postponed, with a new date yet to be confirmed.

"Moana Pasifika have been desperately unlucky with a third postponed match against the Hurricanes this weekend, but that's COVID," adds Lendrum. 

"I can only applaud the club for the way they have dealt with adversity, and I think that character showed when they took the field for the first time last week."

The rescheduled matches also mean the Highlanders' round nine home match at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin -  initially scheduled for Saturday,  April 16 -  will switch places with the Moana Pasifika v Chiefs match, which moves forward one day.

Join Newshub for live updates of the Blues v Highlanders Super Rugby Pacific clash from 7pm Friday.