THIS SEASON will see the top 20 rugby teams in Europe compete in the brand new European Champions Cup, while a further 20 teams will play in a second tier tournament, the European Challenge Cup. To celebrate the inaugural season for these brand new tournaments, two shiny new trophies have been made!
Both trophies have been made by Thomas Lyte of London, with the Champions Cup (right) designed to look like a star when viewed from above, with five handles. There are also 20 stars engraved on the cup, to represent the 20 teams taking part.
Meanwhile, the silver rods cradling the rugby ball, part of the Challenge Cup (left), are also topped with stars.
Which teams do you think will be the first to lift these new trophies? Key clashes in the opening round of the Champions Cup include Leicester v Ulster and Racing Métro v Northampton, while Cardiff will meet Grenoble, and Stade Français will host the Dragons in the Challenge Cup.
Carl Hayman tells RW that Toulon can win a third consecutive European Cup this season, while we take a couple of Exeter Chiefs to play crazy golf… and talk about the Challenge Cup! Click here to see what else is in this month’s mag.