Exiles and Gloucester paired together
June 14, 2012
Biarritz lifted the Amlin Challenge Cup last season © Getty Images
The groups have been announced for next season's Amlin Challenge Cup with Aviva Premiership duo Gloucester and London Irish paired in the same pool.
The draw means the Premiership duo will face a tough ask to get out of their group with them joined by Bordeaux-Begles and Mont-de-Marsan in Pool 1. The duo met in the final of the Challenge Cup back in 2006 with Gloucester taking the match 36-34 after extra time.
Other eye catching draws include the Worcester Warriors paired with Perpignan in Pool 2. The Warriors had to contend with Stade Francais last year and they will hope to fare better this time round after losing both of their clashes against the French giants.
In Pool 3, Wasps are matched with Bayonne in a repeat of last season's pool draw. While Wasps lost away in France 19-11, but they won the return leg back at Adams Park in convincing fashion 25-11. In Pool 5, Bath are paired with Italy's Calvisano, France's Agen and Romania's Bucharest Wolves.
The line up is completed by Pool 5 with Newcastle Falcons - if they retain their top flight status at the expense of London Welsh - joined with Stade Francais, Cavalieri and Top 14 new boys Grenoble.
Amlin Challenge Cup draw:
Round 1 - October 11/12/13/14, 2012
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
The time for tinkering is over - England must nail their colours to the mast in key positions, writes Phil Vickery
"New Zealand-born Joe Schmidt has forged the Irish into a street-smart, well- prepared side," John Mitchell on the Irish renaissance
"I am bored of hearing 'I can't fault the effort'. Let us take that for granted and look for some quality." John Taylor writes
Reports comparing the 2014 Wallabies with their rabble-like predecessors of 2005 are unfair and self-serving, Greg Growden reports