Sunwolves axed from Super Rugby - report

MICHAEL BRADLEY/AFP/Getty Images

Asia's only Super Rugby-based side is set to be axed from the competition.

According to reports, the Sunwolves involvement in Super Rugby is set to end after South Africa Rugby led the push to remove the side from the competition citing a lack of South African crowd interest to their matches and the travel time being too taxing.

Players and officials within the team were made aware of their axing on Tuesday night, leaving them devastated.

A Sunwolves representative told The Australian SANZAAR had requested the side pay a participation fee but the club had refused.

No other club pays a participation fee.

It is understood the side will be forced to play out the 2020 season, while from 2021 the competition will revert to 14 teams with the convoluted conference system to be scrapped with the return of a much preferred round-robin format that had been used in previous years.

The Sunwolves joined the competition as part of an expansion in 2016, alongside Argentina-based Jaguares, but have struggled to make a dent in the competition - winning just seven of their 43 matches.

The Sunwolves shocked the Chiefs in round three to win their first away win, but have been able to get another win on the board despite a tight tussle against the Waratahs that saw them go down by a point.

In a statement SANZAAR confirmed they will make an official statement on the future of Super Rugby on Friday afternoon.