Fixtures - Top Bar

The Anglo-Welsh Cup is back!

Fixture Change – Saracens v Newcastle

LAST year was one to remember for rugby as the Rugby World Cup touched down on these shores, but the traditionalists would have noted one glaring omission from the calendar.

The Anglo-Welsh Cup, which in some shape or form had been running for the last 45 years, took a season off – and the competition will be bigger and better than ever after being restored to its natural place.

The first two rounds left Northampton Saints, Ospreys, Harlequins and Leicester Tigers leading the four pools and to see the next set of fixtures in January click here.

This season sees BT Sport take up the television rights for the first time, having committed to doubling the screening of live matches and the Final will be staged at the Twickenham Stoop on Sunday 19 March.

Click here for tickets to the Anglo-Welsh Cup Final on 19 March

It all kicked off live on TV on the weekend of November 4 with two mouth-watering ties – Bath Rugby first entertain Leicester Tigers at the Rec on the Friday night, before the cameras moved to the Stoop a day later for Harlequins versus Exeter Chiefs.

Established in 1972, the cup pre-dates the existence of league competition in England and has been lifted by some legendary sides both before and since the onset of professionalism.

Click here for an explanation of how the Anglo-Welsh Cup works

Bath have the warmest memories of the all-conquering sides in the 80s and 90s that swept to an incredible ten final victories in the space of 13 years.

And the 2003 expansion has added another competitive dimension to the cup, with Ospreys and Cardiff Blues among the list of winners since the turn of the millennium.

“Everyone at Premiership Rugby is delighted to see the return of the Anglo-Welsh competition and the clubs can’t wait to get started,” said Phil Winstanley, rugby director at Premiership Rugby.

“The competition has played a huge role in the development of young talent in both England and Wales.

“England’s recent success in the Under-20s World Cup shows there is a depth of talent in English rugby like never before and I can’t wait to see the current crop get their chance in first team rugby via the Anglo-Welsh Cup.”

In recent times the competition has also developed into the breeding ground for some of the best British talent in the game – and a precursor of things to come in Aviva Premiership Rugby.


The Anglo-Welsh Cup proved the first major trophy in Exeter Chiefs’ 143-year history – fittingly in front of their own fans at Sandy Park – when they toppled Northampton Saints in 2014.

“The big thing for me is to see the players get a reward,” said head coach Rob Baxter at the time. “They’ve worked so hard this season and we’ve not always had the reward for our hard work.”

Click here for the Anglo-Welsh Fixtures and match reports

Indeed, that hard work continued to pay off as fast forward two years and the nucleus of that triumphant Exeter side, including England backs Jack Nowell and Henry Slade, appeared in their first Aviva Premiership Rugby final back in May.

And don’t forget how far Saracens, the victors that day at Twickenham, have come too – this time 18 months ago, they had not lifted a trophy since 2011.

But their Anglo-Welsh Cup success over the defending champions Exeter in 2015 sparked a goldrush that few have matched in domestic rugby, with back-to-back Aviva Premiership Rugby titles and a European Champions Cup to boot.

No player encapsulates their meteoric rise more so than Maro Itoje, who skippered Saracens the day of the Franklin’s Gardens final and was then best known for his work with the England Under-20s.

“I am so happy for everyone involved, it was such a massive team effort. To win it that way was amazing,” said Itoje following his first Saracens success.

“We knew what our plan was and knew they would have their moments but we stuck to it and it has paid off.

“There has been a lot of work that has gone on behind the scenes and the coaches have believed in the team since day one, so I’m really thankful we have been able to repay their faith.”

Now the 21-year-old Itoje is fast becoming a household name after being simply irrepressible in England’s engine room during the historic Test series whitewash in Australia – and it begs the question of how much more talent is set to shine in the competition this time around.

There is reason to believe that this year’s edition will be packed with more talent than ever before, as senior players across all 16 clubs bid to fend off competition from the rising stars.

In Manchester this summer, the England romped to victory at the World Rugby Under-20 Championship after beating Ireland 45-21 in the final.

But Aviva Premiership Rugby clubs would be foolish to discount Welsh claims this year – their youngsters overturned England on the way to the country’s first-ever title, let alone Grand Slam, at the 2016 Under-20s Six Nations.

Previous Winners
2014-15 Saracens 23 Exeter Chiefs 20
2013-14 Exeter Chiefs 15 Northampton Saints 8
2012-13 Harlequins 32 Sale Sharks 14
2011-12 Leicester Tigers 26 Northampton Saints 14
2010-11 Gloucester Rugby 34 Newcastle Falcons 7
2009-10 Northampton Saints 30 Gloucester Rugby 24
2008-09 Cardiff Blues 50 Northampton Saints 12
2007-08 Ospreys 23 Leicester Tigers 6
2006-07 Leicester Tigers 41 Ospreys 35
2005-06 London Wasps 26 Llanelli Scarlets 10



Latest News

Will Spencer and Connor Braid set for Worcester Warriors debuts

Worcester Warriors duo Will Spencer and Connor Braid will make their club debuts this Saturday when they take on Newport…


Exeter Chiefs side to face Bordeaux Begles

Nothing less than victory will suffice for Rob Baxter and his Exeter Chiefs side ahead of Sunday’s European Champions Cup…

Jack Nowell in last season's Aviva Premiership Rugby final

Kurtley Beale named in Wasps team to face Connacht Rugby this Sunday at the Ricoh Arena

Kurtley Beale named in Wasps team to face Connacht Rugby this Sunday at the Ricoh Arena Wallaby signing Kurtley Beale…

Kurtley Beale will make his Wasps debut in the Champions Cup

England quartet return for Saracens European clash with Sale Sharks

Saracens have named their side to face Sale Sharks in Saturday’s round three of the European Rugby Champions Cup clash…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Harlequins team to play Timisoara Saracens

Harlequins has announced the squad to play Timisoara Saracens in Round 3 of the European Rugby Challenge Cup at the…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Leicester Tigers team news for European Champions Cup trip to Ireland

Manu Tuilagi and Ben Youngs return to the Leicester Tigers line-up for Saturday's European Champions Cup trip to face Munster…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Sale Sharks name side to face Saracens in European Rugby Champions Cup

Sale Sharks have named their side to take on Saracens in the European Rugby Champions Cup on Saturday (kick off…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Ewels and Stooke back for Bath Rugby

Charlie Ewels and Elliott Stooke both return to the Bath Rugby starting line-up tomorrow when they face Cardiff Blues in…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Fisher hails ‘outstanding’ Gloucester Rugby after La Rochelle win

Gloucester Rugby ran in four tries as they romped to an impressive European Rugby Challenge Cup win over La Rochelle,…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Shervington re-joins Wasps on short-term contract

Edd Shervington has signed a three-month contract with the club to provide cover at hooker, following injuries to Tom Cruse…

Edd Shervington

Dean Hammond – We’ll play a positive brand of rugby

Winger Dean Hammond insists Worcester Warriors will play a positive brand of rugby as they prepare for Saturday's European Challenge…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Premiership Rugby clubs in Europe live on TV

Aviva Premiership Rugby’s finest return to European Rugby Champions Cup and Challenge Cup action this weekend looking to build on…


Josh Beaumont backs Sale Sharks’ new boys to shine

Marquee summer signings AJ MacGinty and Josh Charnley are primed and ready to make their presence felt in the second…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Match officials for this weekend’s European fixtures

Northampton Saints will face Leinster in a rematch of the memorable 2011 final as the European Rugby Champions Cup returns…


Sam Egerton ready for fierce Lyon challenge

Scrum-half Sam Egerton believes Newcastle Falcons can push on and meet ‘fire with fire’ against Lyon in the European Rugby…

Sam Egerton making a break against Ospreys in the Challenge Cup

Geoff Parling: Chiefs can draw European inspiration from last season’s heroics

Following two defeats from two, qualification for the European knock-out stages may look like mission improbable – but if there’s…


Aaron Morris desperate for Quins to sort out away form

Aaron Morris is proud of Harlequins’ record at the Stoop but the full-back has warned his teammates the season will…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Fenton-Wells confident Lam will make impact at Bristol Rugby

Bristol Rugby flanker Nick Fenton-Wells is confident the club have acquired a top coach in Pat Lam but won’t let…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library