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1996–97 Heineken Cup

1996–97 Heineken Cup
Tournament details
Countries England
 France
 Ireland
 Italy
 Scotland
 Wales
Tournament format(s)Round-robin and Knockout
Date12 October 1996 to 25 January 1997
Tournament statistics
Teams20
Matches played47
Attendance317,987 (6,766 per match)
Top point scorer(s)Richard Dourthe (Dax)
(82 points)
Top try scorer(s)Sebastien Carrat (Brive)
(10 tries)
Final
VenueCardiff Arms Park, Cardiff
Attendance41,664
ChampionsFrance Brive (1st title)
Runners-upEngland Leicester Tigers
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The 1996–97 Heineken Cup was the second edition of the Heineken Cup, an international competition for the top European rugby union clubs. Competing teams from France, Ireland, Italy, Wales and, for the first time, England and Scotland, were divided into four pools of five, with each team playing the other teams once, meaning two home and two away games per team. The pool winners and runners-up qualified for the knock-out stages. The competition was won by a French team for the second time, when Brive beat their English opponents Leicester Tigers 28–9 at the Cardiff Arms Park. The defending champions Toulouse were knocked out in the semi–final by Leicester Tigers and Brive beat Cardiff in the other semi–final.[1]

Teams

The qualifying teams were drawn from six countries. Generally, these were the strongest teams from the top division of domestic rugby; weaker teams participated in the Challenge Cup:

England England France France Ireland Ireland Italy Italy Scotland Scotland Wales Wales

Pool stage

In the pool matches teams received

  • 2 points for a win
  • 1 points for a draw

Pool 1

Team P W D L Tries for Tries against Try diff Points for Points against Points diff Pts
France Dax 4 3 0 1 16 2 14 141 69 72 6
England Bath 4 3 0 1 15 8 7 136 88 48 6
Wales Pontypridd 4 3 0 1 7 3 4 97 60 37 6
Italy Benetton Treviso 4 1 0 3 13 15 –2 106 135 –29 2
Scotland Edinburgh 4 0 0 4 6 29 –23 71 199 –128 0

Pool 2

Team P W D L Tries for Tries against Try diff Points for Points against Points diff Pts
England Leicester 4 4 0 0 14 3 11 114 43 71 8
Wales Llanelli 4 2 0 2 9 9 0 97 81 16 4
Ireland Leinster 4 2 0 2 9 12 –3 86 109 –23 4
France Pau 4 1 0 3 19 10 9 137 103 34 2
Scotland Scottish Borders 4 1 0 3 7 24 –17 80 178 –98 2

Pool 3

Team P W D L Tries for Tries against Try diff Points for Points against Points diff Pts
France Brive 4 4 0 0 13 8 5 106 65 41 8
England Harlequins 4 3 0 1 20 8 12 131 95 36 6
Wales Neath 4 2 0 2 10 16 –6 83 109 –26 4
Ireland Ulster 4 1 0 3 6 10 –4 75 87 –12 2
Scotland Caledonia 4 0 0 4 13 20 –7 117 156 –39 0

Pool 4

Team P W D L Tries for Tries against Try diff Points for Points against Points diff Pts
France Toulouse 4 3 0 1 21 13 8 157 142 15 6
Wales Cardiff 4 3 0 1 16 7 9 135 97 38 6
England London Wasps 4 2 0 2 17 14 3 156 115 41 4
Ireland Munster 4 2 0 2 11 22 –11 109 135 –26 4
Italy Milan 4 0 0 4 6 15 –9 73 141 –68 0

Seeding

Seed Pool Winners Pts TF +/−
1 England Leicester 8 14 +71
2 France Brive 8 13 +41
3 France Toulouse 6 21 +15
4 France Dax 6 16 +72
Seed Pool Runners-up Pts TF +/−
5 England Harlequins 6 20 +36
6 Wales Cardiff RFC 6 16 +38
7 England Bath 6 15 +48
8 Wales Llanelli RFC 4 9 +16

Knockout stage

Quarter finals

9 November 1996
14:30
Cardiff Wales 22 – 19 England Bath
Cardiff Arms Park, Cardiff
Attendance: 12,000
16 November 1996
15:00
Leicester Tigers England 23 – 13 England Harlequins
Welford Road, Leicester
Attendance: 10,263
16 November 1996
16:00
Dax France 18 – 26 France Toulouse
Stade Maurice-Boyau, Dax
Attendance: 14,000
17 November 1996
14:45
Brive France 35 – 14 Wales Llanelli

Semi finals

4 January 1997
15:05
Leicester Tigers England 37 – 11 France Toulouse
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,300
5 January 1997
15:30
Brive France 26 – 13 Wales Cardiff
Parc Municipal des Sports
Attendance: 14,000

Final

The 1997 Heineken Cup Final was the final match of the 1996–97 Heineken Cup, the second season of Europe's top club rugby union competition. The match was played on 25 January 1997 at the Arms Park in Cardiff. The match was contested by Brive of France and Leicester of England. Brive won the match 28–9; they took the lead early on through a fourth-minute penalty from Christophe Lamaison, and Sébastien Viars extended that lead with an unconverted try two minutes later. Leicester responded with three penalties from John Liley, but Brive finally made their pressure show with three second-half tries, one of which was converted, before Lamaison added a drop goal to seal a 19-point victory.

25 January 1997
14:30
Brive France 28 – 9 England Leicester
Tries: Viars
Fabre
Carrat (2)
Con: Lamaison
Pen: Lamaison
Drop: Lamaison
Report Pen: Liley (3)
Cardiff Arms Park, Cardiff
Attendance: 41,664
Referee: Derek Bevan (Wales)

References

  1. ^ Mick Cleary and John Griffiths, ed. (1997). Rothmans Rugby Union Yearbook 1997–98. London: Headline Book Publishing. ISBN 0 7472 7732 X.