The focus switches from the PRO12 to Europe this weekend when the Ospreys get their European Rugby Champions Cup campaign underway against Exeter Chiefs at the Liberty Stadium this Sunday (5.30pm KO).
The Ospreys progressed to the top tier European competition after finishing in third place in last season’s PRO12, giving them automatic qualification under the new rules introduced last year.
They welcome an Exeter side that has begun their Premiership season in impressive style and currently sit in second place, with three wins from four games, after ending Leicester’s unbeaten start at the weekend. The Chiefs qualified for the competition after finishing fifth last season, only missing out on a place in the Premiership play-offs on the final day of the season.
Also in Pool 2 with the Ospreys and Exeter are French giants Clermont Auvergne, and their compatriots, Bordeaux Begles.
Big spending Clermont currently sit at the top of France’s T14 after eight games, despite a 14-9 defeat at Stade Francais yesterday. Last season they tasted defeat in both the ERCC final (24-18 to Toulon) and the T14 Final (12-6 against Stade Francais).
Bordeaux are set for their first ever ERCC campaign after defeating Gloucester in the European play-offs. Promoted to the T14 in 2011 they have established themselves in the French top flight with last season’s 7th place finish their highest yet. They currently sit in 7th again this campaign but lost 16-3 at Brive on Saturday night.
Tickets for Sunday’s game against Exeter are on sale now at the Liberty Stadium Ticket Office, online at ospreysrugby.com/buytickets or via the Ticket Hotline on 0844 815 6665.
EUROPEAN RUGBY CHAMPIONS CUP POOL 2 - OSPREYS FIXTURES
Rd 1- Ospreys v Exeter, Sun 15th Nov, 17.30 KO, Liberty Stadium
Rd 2 – Clermont v Ospreys, Sun 22nd Nov, KO 14.00, Stade Marcel Michelin
Rd 3 – Ospreys v Bordeaux Begles, Sat 12th Dec, KO 17.15, Liberty Stadium
Rd 4 – Bordeaux Begles v Ospreys, Sat 19th Dec, KO 18.15, Stade Chaban-Delmas
Rd 5 – Ospreys v Clermont, 15/16/17 Jan TBC, Liberty Stadium
Rd 6 – Exeter v Ospreys, 22/23/24 Jan TBC, Sandy Park
Rounds 5 and 6 will be confirmed following the completion of Round 4 as per usual.