The Reds and Stormers lie in wait for the two survivors of this weekend's first round of Super Rugby play-offs, the start of a three-week dash to glory.
The Blues will play the Waratahs on Friday and the Crusaders host the Sharks on Saturday with the winners advancing to play semifinals against the Reds and Stormers.
The Reds, who finished the regular season in first place, will play the lowest-ranked qualifier to advance in Brisbane on July 2, while the Stormers - beaten finalists last year - will play the highest-ranked winner at Newlands in Cape Town.
There's plenty of semifinal permutations, so here's basic explanation:
The Crusaders finished the regular season in third place, the Blues in fourth, the Waratahs in fifth and the Sharks in sixth. That would mean that if the Crusaders win their playoff in Nelson, they can only play the Stormers and if the Sharks win they can only play the Reds.
* If the Blues and Crusaders win, the Crusaders will play the Stormers and Blues will play the Reds.
* But if the Blues and Sharks win, the Blues will play the Stormers and the Sharks will play the Reds.
* If the Crusaders and Waratahs win, the Crusaders will play the Stormers and the Waratahs will meet the Reds in what would be a dream scenario for Australian fans.
* If the Sharks and Waratahs win, the Waratahs will play the Stormers and the Sharks will play the Reds.
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