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BKT United Rugby Championship: Round 1 Preview

BKT United Rugby Championship: Round 1 Preview

The new United Rugby Championship kicks off tonight with Benetton Rugby hosting Glasgow Warriors in Treviso ©INPHO/Billy Stickland

The BKT United Rugby Championship starts this weekend with an exciting round of games to kick off the new season.

Benetton Rugby will host Glasgow Warriors in the opening match of the BKT URC tonight, while Leinster are the first of the Irish provinces in action, making the trip to Parma to play Zebre on Saturday.

There are also three derby fixtures lined up, including Ulster’s showdown with Connacht at Kingspan Stadium. In a rejigging of their coaching staff, Andy Friend is now Connacht’s director of rugby with Peter Wilkins assuming the head coach duties.

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The Emirates Lions entertain last season’s runners-up, the Vodacom Bulls, in Johannesburg, and the Ospreys will clash with the Scarlets in Llanelli as they begin the defence of their Welsh Shield title.

Munster, with Graham Rowntree now in the head coach hotseat, tackle Cardiff Rugby at the Arms Park.

The game in the Welsh capital was rescheduled from Friday night to Saturday afternoon due to significant logistical challenges arising from the visit of HRH King Charles III and the Queen’s Consort to Cardiff.

The opening round wraps up with Welsh side Dragons paying a visit to Edinburgh. The Scots only lost one of their URC fixtures at the DAM Health Stadium last season.


Friday, September 16 –

Benetton Rugby v Glasgow Warriors, Stadio di Monigo, 6.30pm local time

Saturday, September 17 –

Zebre Parma v LEINSTER, Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi, 2pm local time/1pm Irish time (live RTÉ 2/Premier Sports 1/discovery+/URC.tv)

Cardiff Rugby v MUNSTER, Cardiff Arms Park, 3.05pm (live RTÉ 2/Premier Sports 1/discovery+/URC.tv)

Emirates Lions v Vodacom Bulls, Emirates Airline Park, 4.05pm local time

Scarlets v Ospreys, Parc y Scarlets, 5.15pm

ULSTER v CONNACHT, Kingspan Stadium, 7.35pm (live BBC 2 Northern Ireland/TG4/Premier Sports 1/discovery+/URC.tv)

Edinburgh v Dragons, DAM Health Stadium, 7.35pm