The Pro14’s new ‘Rainbow Cup’ competition gets underway this weekend. It was originally intended to include the South African teams involved in the Pro14, but they have been forced to pull out due to the COVID restrictions in place in Britain and Ireland. Nonetheless, there are plenty of exciting games upcoming and we have all the info you need on how to watch the Rainbow Cup game between Ulster and Connacht.
What is the Rainbow Cup?
The Rainbow Cup was devised as a cross-continental competition with four Irish, four Welsh, four South African, two Scottish, and two Italian teams. It was intended to give the South African teams much-needed competitive action ahead of this summer’s Lions tour.
However, due to issues surrounding visa clearances, the South African teams were forced to withdraw mere days before the Cup’s beginning. What’s left is a slightly reformatted Pro14 competition, with only the 12 northern hemisphere teams to play in two conferences. The winners of the two conferences will contest a final in June.
Where will Ulster v Connacht take place?
Ulster host Connacht at Kingspan Ravenhill in Belfast. The game will be played behind closed doors.
When will Ulster v Connacht kick-off?
Ulster v Connacht kicks off at 8:15pm on Friday April 23rd.
How to watch Ulster v Connacht in Ireland?
Eir Sport are the host broadcasters for the game, with their live coverage starting at 8pm. TG4 will have deferred coverage of the game later in the evening, with their coverage kicking off at 10:25pm.
How are the two teams looking?
Ulster have the Challenge Cup semi-finals to look forward to in the coming weeks, after their dramatic win over Leicester in the quarter-finals. Ulster and Connacht finished second in their conferences in the Pro14, but they were both a long way off the pace of Leinster and Munster at the top.
Who's playing in the game?
📢 𝗧𝗲𝗮𝗺 𝗔𝗻𝗻𝗼𝘂𝗻𝗰𝗲𝗺𝗲𝗻𝘁
Here is your match-day 2️⃣3️⃣ to represent Ulster 🆚 @connachtrugby at Kingspan Stadium tomorrow night (8.15pm kick-off) ⤵️
Hendy and Will are back 🙌#ULSvCON #GuinnessPRO14RainbowCup #SUFTUM ⚪️🔴
— Ulster Rugby (@UlsterRugby) April 22, 2021
🟢 𝙏𝙀𝘼𝙈 𝘼𝙉𝙉𝙊𝙐𝙉𝘾𝙀𝙈𝙀𝙉𝙏 🟢
Representing Connacht in our first Rainbow Cup fixture is . . . 👇#ULSvCON #GuinnessPRO14RainbowCup
— Connacht Rugby (@connachtrugby) April 22, 2021
Are there any other games on?
Leinster v Munster on Saturday evening is the headline fixture for Irish fans this weekend. Eir Sport are showing that game live as well, with kick-off from the RDS at 7:35pm. Edinburgh v Zebre is the other game on Friday night, with eir Sport again carrying live coverage.