Cape Town - PRO14 CEO Martin Anayi has hinted that the tournament could further expand to possibly include more South African teams.
Two South African sides - the Cheetahs and Southern Kings - joined the competition last year, but recent reports have indicated that more could follow suit.
There have been rumours that some of South Africa’s Super Rugby franchises could leave the southern hemisphere for competitions in Europe, while two more SA provinces - Griquas and the Pumas - were also recently identified as franchise candidates.
It’s not sure whether these teams are slated to join the PRO14 but the competition’s boss has not ruled out the possibility.
“We are on record as saying we want to keep on expanding. We go through a check list of main items when it comes to prospective teams and if all the boxes are ticked - the business case, the fan case, the competitive case - we look at it. South Africa makes a lot of sense for us from a structural point of view, so we will definitely look at them again. We have got to grow the league in a way that is sustainable and workable," Anayi said in an interview with the Wales Online website.
Anayi hinted that two more sides could join the competition in the near future.
“I think the best number for our competition is 16. Strange as it may sound, that will actually allow us to play less rugby. Going to 16 sides would make that possible. We have worked it out. Having changed our format, we can be a little more flexible.”
The Cheetahs performed adequately in their debut season in the PRO14 by reaching the playoffs, while the Kings struggled by winning only one of 21 games.