The Bunnings Warehouse NPC will be played between all 14 Premier Competition Unions. With teams divided into two conferences of seven teams based on the previous season’s standings.
The 14 teams are divided into two conferences of seven teams (referred to as the “Odds Conference” and “Evens Conference”).
Teams finishing 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11 and 13 will form the Odds Conference.
Teams finishing 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12 and 14 will form the Evens Conference.
Each team plays ten competition matches (five home games and five away games) (“Round Robin”) prior to quarter-finals and/ or semi-finals and/ or finals (“Finals Rounds”).
The round-robin includes four crossover matches per team, where teams from the Odds conference will play teams from the Evens conference.
All Bunnings NPC Odds/Evens Conferences play against each other once, as well as four crossover matches against Bunnings NPC teams from the opposite conference.
The teams in the Odds Conference for 2022 are:
- Hawke’s Bay
- Bay of Plenty
- Counties Manukau
The teams in the Evens Conference for 2022 are:
- North Harbour
All games (including crossover matches) carry full competition points, four for a win, two for a draw as well as the bonus point format.
Four Quarter-Finals will take place between teams:
- QF1: Odds 1 plays Odds 4
- QF2: Odds 2 plays Odds 3
- QF3: Evens 1 plays Evens 4
- QF4: Evens 2 plays Evens 3.
Two Semi-Finals will take place between winners of QF 1 and QF 4; and winners of QF 2 and QF 3. Matches to be played at the home venue of the Premier Competition Union with the higher finals ranking.
The winning semi-finalists will play each other in the Premier Competition final. The winning finalist will be awarded the Bunnings NPC Competition trophy.
Ties During or at Conclusion of Round Robin
In the event that two or more teams have the same number of competition points the positions of the Provincial Unions will be determined in accordance with the following criteria, which will be applied in the order in which they appear below until the tie is broken:
- Where any two Provincial Unions are tied:
- The winner of any Round Robin match played between the two Provincial Unions in that year will have the higher position.
- The Provincial Union which has the higher points difference in the Round Robin will have the higher position.
- Where three or more Provincial Unions are tied:
- if all tied Provincial Unions have played each other the tied Provincial Union with the most competition points in that year against the other tied Provincial Unions shall have the higher position.
- if all tied Provincial Unions have not played against the other tied Provincial Unions, the tied Provincial Union which has the higher points difference in the Round Robin will have the higher position.
- If a tie cannot be broken by the criteria set out in subclauses (a) and (b) of this clause: i. The Provincial Union that scored the most tries in the Round Robin shall have the higher position.
- The Provincial Union that scored the most points in the Round Robin shall have the higher position.
- The toss of a coin will be used.
Ties In Finals Round
In the event that teams are tied at the end of a Finals Round match, the winner will be determined by the following criteria, which shall be applied in the order in which they appear until a result is determined:
- The winner following a further ten (10) minutes of extra time each way.
- The team scoring the most tries in the match (including extra time).
- The winner of any Round Robin match played in that year between the two teams.
- The team having the higher points difference at the end of the Round Robin.
- The team that scored the most tries in the Round Robin.
- The team that scored the most points in the Round Robin.
- The team with the higher finals ranking.