Three Super Rugby teams are set to get the axe when Sanzaar announce the new competition structure for next season, according to reports.

TVNZ's Andrew Saville is reporting that two South African franchises and an Australian side will be axed as Super Rugby will be reduced to 15 teams.

Chief executives from all five Australian franchises were briefed on recent developments by senior Australian Rugby Union (ARU) officials on Tuesday, just hours after a report emerged claiming an Australian team is to be cut.

The Force, Rebels and Brumbies are considered the local sides under most threat.

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In South Africa it looks likely the Southern Kings will be dropped from the competition along with one other franchise.

All five New Zealand franchises will remain in the competition.

Yesterday Harold Verster, CEO of South African team the Cheetahs, told media he understood one Australian team and one of South Africa's six teams will go, with the competition to be reduced from 18 teams to 16 for next season.

That followed the meeting of governing body Sanzaar in London last week which discussed detailed proposals to fix the unwieldy and unbalanced competition, driven by financial pressure and disillusioned fans.