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|Event||European Rugby Champions Cup Qualification Play-off|
|Date||23 and 30 May 2015|
The 2015–16 European Rugby Champions Cup-Challenge Cup play-off was the second play-off for entry into the top level competition of European Club rugby union, the European Rugby Champions Cup.
Following the two-team play-off in 2014–15, an expanded, four-team format was due to be used. However, on 24 September 2014, it was announced this would instead be a three-team play-off, with the highest placed non-qualifying team taking part.
To accommodate the longer season in the French Top 14, the format was announced as follows:
Gloucester became the first team to qualify for the play-off, taking the place allocated to the Premiership, when they beat Edinburgh 19–13 in the Challenge Cup final on 1 May 2015. This result meant that the 7th place team in the 2014–15 Premiership will no longer take part in the play-off, and will compete in the Challenge Cup. Connacht qualified next, when the finished seventh in the 2014–15 Pro12 with 50 points, narrowly edging Edinburgh who had 48 points. Bordeaux Bègles qualified for the play-off on 23 May 2015.
Connacht played Gloucester away at Gloucester's Kingsholm Stadium on Sunday 24 May 2015, with the venue having been decided earlier by a coin toss. It was decided that, in the event of a Gloucester win, the second play-off match would be played at Sixways Stadium in Worcester, to avoid a clash of fixtures with a Madness concert.
|Premiership||Gloucester||David Humphreys||Kingsholm Stadium|
|Pro12||Connacht||Pat Lam||Galway Sportsgrounds|
|Top 14||Bordeaux Bègles||Raphaël Ibañez||Stade André Moga|
24 May 2015
|Try: Moriarty 1' c
Sharples 26' m
Meakes 80' c
Dawidiuk 95' m
May 98' c
Con: Laidlaw (3/5) 1', 80', 98'
Pen: Laidlaw (2/3) 19', 43'
Hook (1/1) 92'
|Report||Try: J. Cooney 8' c|
Carty 29' c
Healy (2) 60' m, 92' c
Con: Carty (3/4) 9', 30', 92'
Pen: Carty (2/3) 7', 79'
31 May 2015
|Try: Purdy 15' c
Con: Laidlaw (1/1) 16'
Pen: Laidlaw (5/6) 2', 10', 24', 32', 70'
|Report||Try: Talebula (2) 37' c, 56' c|
Con: Bernard (2/2) 39', 58'
Pen: Bernard (2/2) 28', 35'
Drop: Bernard (1/1) 80'
Connacht will now play Gloucester away at Kingsholm next Sunday, with the winner of that tie playing the French Top 14 seventh-placed side for a spot in next year's Champions Cup.
The coin toss will take place during coverage of the Champions Cup final between Clermont Auvergne and Toulon at Twickenham.
Gloucester win coin toss for home advantage in Champions Cup play-off. ... Gloucester have secured home advantage in the first play-off fixture to secure a European Champions Cup spot next season - but a Madness concert could hinder their chances of qualifying should they progress. ... 'We are delighted to have won the toss to stage the first fixture, and now look forward to seeing who we will meet in that game,' Gloucester chief executive Stephen Vaughan told the club's official website.'Should we win that match, and no-one is taking anything for granted, we have had to make contingency plans for the second play-off game, and that contingency would be for us to play at Sixways Stadium in Worcester.