<p> The top teams from each pool qualify for the knockout stages.<p>The pool winners will be decided by the following criteria:<p>1. The pool winner will be the club with the highest number of match points in each pool. The pool winners will be ranked 1 to 4 by reference to the number of match points earned in the pools.<p>2. If two or more clubs in the same pool end the pool stage equal on match points, then the order in which they have finished will be determined by:<p>i. the greater number of matches won by the club and<p>ii. if the number of matches won is equal, the club with the greater total number of tries scored and<p>iii. if the total number of tries scored is equal, the club with the greater points difference (points scored for, less points scored against) and<p>iv. if the points difference is equal, the club with the fewer number of red cards and<p>v. if the number of red cards is the same, by the toss of a coin.
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