Champions Cup quarter-final dates confirmed

Date published: January 29 2016

The dates and kick-off times for this season's Champions Cup quarter-finals have been confirmed by EPCR.

The knockout stages of the tournaments mark the beginning of the end of the journey to the 2016 finals in May when the two showcase matches will be staged at the state-of-the-art 59,000-capacity Grand Stade de Lyon.

The Champions Cup quarter-finals kick off on Saturday, April 9 with Wasps, the last Aviva Premiership club to win the coveted title in 2007, taking on the Exeter Chiefs at the Ricoh Arena.

That clash of the two-time champions against the first-timers in the knockout stage will be followed by the meeting of number one seeds Saracens, who have reached the last eight for the fifth season in a row, and Northampton Saints at Allianz Park.

On Sunday, April 10, Leicester Tigers host Stade Français at Welford Road in what promises to be another classic Anglo-French contest. Tigers have booked their ticket to the quarter-finals for the 13th time – two behind the record held jointly by Toulouse and Munster – while Stade are appearing in the last eight for the first time since 2010.

The road to Lyon will be clearer when Racing 92 and reigning champions, Toulon, meet at Stade Yves-du-Manoir in an all-French confrontation which could see recent World Cup winners, Dan Carter and Ma'a Nonu going head-to-head.

A major weekend of knockout rugby will commence with the first of the Challenge Cup quarter-finals between Sale Sharks and Montpellier at the AJ Bell Stadium on Friday, April 8, with holders Gloucester Rugby, who are on a record run of 15 victories in the tournament, up against the Newport Gwent Dragons at Kingsholm the following day.

All eight quarter-finals will be broadcast live with the coverage shared by BT Sport, Sky Sports, beIN Sports and France Télévisions.

European Rugby Champions Cup quarter-finals

(All kick-offs local time)

Saturday, April 9

QF2: Wasps v Exeter Chiefs, Ricoh Arena (15:15)

QF1: Saracens v Northampton Saints, Allianz Park (17:45)

Sunday, April 10

QF4: Leicester Tigers v Stade Français, Welford Road (13:45)

QF3: Racing 92 v RC Toulon, Stade Yves-du-Manoir (17:15/16:15 GMT)

Semi-final 1: Saracens or Northampton Saints v Wasps or Exeter Chiefs

Semi-final 2: Racing 92 or RC Toulon v Leicester Tigers or Stade Francais Paris

(Matches to be played on 23/24 April)

Champions Cup final: Saturday, 14 May; Grand Stade de Lyon (17:45/16:45 GMT)

European Rugby Challenge Cup quarter-finals

(All kick-offs local time)

Friday, April 8

QF3: Sale Sharks v Montpellier, AJ Bell Stadium (19:45)

Saturday, April 9

QF4: Gloucester v Newport Gwent Dragons, Kingsholm (12:45)

QF1: Harlequins v London Irish, Twickenham Stoop (20:05)

QF2: Grenoble v Connacht, Stade des Alpes (21:05)

Semi-final 1: Harlequins or London Irish v Grenoble or Connacht

Semi-final 2: Sale Sharks or Montpellier v Gloucester or Newport Gwent Dragons

(Matches to be played on 22/23/24 April)

Challenge Cup final: Friday, 13 May; Grand Stade de Lyon (21:00/20:00 GMT)