The Rugby Championship will kick off this weekend.
Following their domination of the 2015 World Cup, the southern hemisphere’s elite international sides are set to do battle over the coming weeks in the Rugby Championship.
However, the rugby landscape has changed a great deal since each of the World Cup’s semi final slots were filled by Argentina, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
Although the Wallabies seemed to be on an upward trajectory under Michael Cheika, their confidence has been diminished somewhat after being whitewashed by Australia in June.
Likewise, soon after the All Blacks finished celebrating celebrating their World Cup triumph, many of their key players either retired or moved to European clubs. Since the Autumn of 2015, South Africa have not only had to watch players leave for Europe, but politicians interfere with squad selection.
Meanwhile, it seems as though Argentina failed to capitalise fully on the inclusion of the Jaguares in Super Rugby this season, raising question marks over the quality of Los Pumas.
Nevertheless, the Rugby Championship will see some of the best and most exciting players in the game showcase their talents over the coming weeks.
Alan Drumm, Pundit Arena