June International Tours

Heineken Cup leaves England reeling



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England coach Brian Ashton will have been watching from behind his sofa as Wasps overpowered Northampton Saints on Sunday to set up a mouth-watering clash with Leicester Tigers in the final of the Heineken Cup.

Rob Andrew, England’s director of rugby, confirmed last week that no player appearing in a European final will be considered for the first Test against South Africa in Bloemfontein on May 26.

So how many players does the ruling affect? Well, the England pack which started against Wales in the final Six Nations game was made up entirely of players from Welford Road and Adams Park.

Ashton is also likely to be without his Bath contingent after their thrilling 31-30 European Challenge Cup semi-final victory over Saracens.

The final of the Heineken Cup takes place at Twickenham on May 20, just six days before the first of two meetings with the Boks. Bath face ASM Clermont Auvergne on the same weekend.


365 Digital

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