European Challenge Cup
Clubs discover Euro Challenge Cup fate
June 15, 2009
Northampton skipper Bruce Reihana lifts the European Challenge Cup, Northampton v Bourgoin, European Challenge Cup, The Stoop, England, May 22, 2009
Northampton skipper Bruce Reihana lifts the European Challenge Cup following his side's victory over Brive in the 2008-09 finale © Getty Images

The battle lines for the 2009-10 European Challenge Cup have been confirmed with the draw for the pool stages.

London Wasps - former winners of both the Heineken Cup and European Challenge Cup - will face Rugby Calvisano, Bayonne and Top 14 newcomers Racing-Metro 92 in the Pool 4 while Saracens must face Jonny Wilkinson's Toulon along with Castres and Rovigo in Pool 3.

Worcester Warriors, semi-finalists in last season's competition, must tackle Connacht, Montpellier and Olympus Rugby XV Madrid in Pool 2. Pool 5 sees Newcastle Falcons up against Montauban, Petrarca Rugby and Albi.

Premiership new boys Leeds Carnegie face trips to Bourgoin, Overmach Rugby Parma and Bucuresti Oaks in Pool 1.

The five Tier 1 teams - London Wasps, Saracens, Bourgoin, Newcastle Falcons and Worcester Warriors - were kept apart in separate Pools with only French clubs drawn in the same Pools as they will have eight teams taking part in the competition.

The competition will kick off on the weekend of October 8/9/10/11.

European Challenge Cup:
Pool 1: Bourgoin, Leeds Carnegie, Overmach Rugby Parma, Bucuresti Oaks
Pool 2: Worcester Warriors, Connacht Rugby, Montpellier, Olympus Rugby XV Madrid
Pool 3: Saracens, Castres Olympique, Toulon, Rugby Rovigo
Pool 4: London Wasps, Rugby Calvisano, Bayonne, Racing-Metro 92 Pool 5: Newcastle Falcons, Montauban, Petrarca Rugby, Albi

European Challenge Cup Tiers:
Tier 1: London Wasps, Saracens, Bourgoin, Worcester Warriors, Newcastle Falcons
Tier 2: Castres Olympique, Leeds Carnegie, Rugby Calvisano, Connacht Rugby, Montauban
Tier 3: Montpellier, Overmach Rugby Parma, Bayonne, Petrarca Rugby, Toulon Tier 4: Rugby Rovigo, Racing-Metro 92, Albi, Bucuresti Oaks, Olympus Rugby XV Madrid

European Challenge Cup Fixtures:
Round 1- 8/9/10/11 October, 2009
Round 2 - 15/16/17/18 October, 2009
Round 3 -10/11/12/13 December, 2009
Round 4 -17/18/19/20 December, 2009
Round 5 - 14/15/16/17 January, 2010 Round 6 - 21/22/23/24 January, 2010

Quarter-Finals - 8/9/10/11 April, 2010
Semi-Finals - 30/1/2 May, 2010
Final: - 21/22/23 May, 2010


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