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European Rugby Cup

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Title: European Rugby Cup  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: European Rugby Champions Cup, Heineken Cup, Estádio Universitário de Lisboa, European Challenge Cup, 2011–12 Heineken Cup
Collection: European Challenge Cup, Heineken Cup
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

European Rugby Cup

European Rugby Cup
Sport Rugby union
Founded 1995
Chairman Jean-Pierre Lux
Chief Exec Derek McGrath
Closure date 2014

European Rugby Cup Ltd (or ERC) was the governing body and organiser of the two major European Rugby Football Union, Premiership Rugby, Fédération Française de Rugby, Ligue Nationale de Rugby, Irish Rugby Football Union, Scottish Rugby Union, Welsh Rugby Union, Regional Rugby Wales and Federazione Italiana Rugby.

The inaugural Heineken Cup competition was held in 1995-96, with the second tier competition established the following season.

In 2012, Premiership Rugby and LNR, on behalf of the English and French clubs respectively, notified ERC that they would be withdrawing from the accord governing the competition, being dissatisfied with the organisation of the competition and the distribution of funding. Premiership Rugby subsequently refused to join any new agreement in which ERC remained organisers of European rugby tournaments. Subsequently, on April 10, 2014 it was announced that the nine shareholders with an interest in continuing major European club competition had come to an agreement for new competitions. Under the new agreement, ERC was wound up, and a new body, European Rugby Champions Cup, the European Rugby Challenge Cup, and the third tier Qualifying Competition, beginning with the 2014-15 season.[2]


  • ERC Governance 1
  • ERC European Player of the Year 2
  • ERC Elite Awards 3
    • Teams with 50 or more appearances 3.1
    • Players with 100 or more Heineken Cup caps 3.2
    • Players with 50 or more Heineken Cup caps 3.3
    • Players with 500 or more Heineken Cup points 3.4
    • Players with 25 or more Heineken Cup tries 3.5
  • References 4

ERC Governance

The Board of ERC, which oversaw the implementation of ERC's strategy for the development of European club rugby, was made up of representatives of the six shareholder unions, league bodies and club representatives and shaped the strategy and development of ERC and the tournaments.

Reporting to and making recommendation the Board were a series of ERC Committees, focusing on the various roles of ERC as a Governing Body and Tournament Organiser and these drew on the experience and expertise of the clubs and Unions from each participation nation.

ERC Committee Structure: - ERC Commercial Committee - ERC Rugby Committee - ERC Match Officials Committee - ERC Disciplinary Committee - ERC Finance and Audit Committee

The ERC Executive and team of 20 employees was based in the Dublin headquarters and were charged with implementing the strategy for the development of European club rugby and management of the two tournaments and of the showpiece ERC Finals weekend.

ERC European Player of the Year

Recognised as one of the most prestigious individual accolades in the game, the ERC European Player of the Year honourrd the best player of the European club rugby season from both the Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup tournaments.

In 2010 ERC launched the ERC15 Awards, recognising the outstanding contributors to the first decade and a half of European competition. The inaugural recipient of the ERC European Player Award, as the best player over the first 15 years of these tournaments, was Munster Rugby's Ronan O'Gara. For the 2010/11 season, ERC moved to present an annual award.

On 26 May 2014, it was announced that Steffon Armitage (Toulon) had been named 2014 ERC European Player of the Year.[3][4]

Winners: [5]
Ronan O'Gara (Munster Rugby) – 2010 (Awarded for the previous 15 seasons)
Seán O'Brien (Leinster Rugby) 2011
Rob Kearney (Leinster Rugby) 2012
Jonny Wilkinson (Toulon) 2013
Steffon Armitage (Toulon) 2014
Nick Abendanon (Clermont) 2015

ERC Elite Awards

To celebrate the 10th anniversary season of the Heineken Cup, the ERC Elite Awards scheme was introduced to recognise the most prominent teams and players of the competitions.

Teams with 50 or more appearances

Team[6] Appearances
Munster 138
Leinster 128
Leicester Tigers 124
Scarlets[n 1] 117
Cardiff Blues[n 2] 114
Edinburgh 103
Benetton Treviso 96
Biarritz Olympique 92
Glasgow Warriors 91
Northampton Saints 83
Perpignan 81
Stade Français 79
London Wasps 78
Montferrand/Clermont Auvergne 76
Bath 72
Ospreys 69
Harlequins 68
Castres Olympique 64
Saracens 56
  1. ^ Includes 48 appearances as Llanelli RFC before the
    introduction of regional rugby union teams in Wales
  2. ^ Includes 44 appearances as Cardiff RFC before the
    introduction of regional rugby union teams in Wales

Players with 100 or more Heineken Cup caps

Player[7] Club(s) Appearances
Ronan O'Gara Munster 110
John Hayes Munster 101
Peter Stringer Munster, Saracens, Bath 100

Players with 50 or more Heineken Cup caps

Player[8] Club(s) Appearances
Ronan O'Gara Munster 110
John Hayes Munster 101
Peter Stringer Munster, Saracens, Bath 100
Gordon D'Arcy Leinster 98
Donncha O'Callaghan Munster 96
Leo Cullen Leinster, Leicester Tigers, Leinster (2nd stint) 92
Shane Horgan Leinster 87
Brian O'Driscoll Leinster
Clément Poitrenaud Toulouse
Anthony Foley Munster 86
David Wallace Munster
Nathan Hines Edinburgh, Perpignan, Leinster, Clermont Auvergne 85
Jean Bouilhou Toulouse 84
Marcus Horan Munster
Stephen Jones Llanelli, Scarlets, Clermont Auvergne, Scarlets (2nd stint)
Fabien Pelous Dax, Toulouse 81
Martyn Williams Pontypridd, Cardiff, Cardiff Blues
Yannick Jauzion Colomiers, Toulouse 79
Alan Quinlan Munster 78
Sylvain Marconnet Stade Français, Biarritz 76
Paul O'Connell Munster
Julien Peyrelongue Biarritz 75
Ian Gough Pontypridd, Newport, Newport Gwent Dragons, Ospreys 74
Geordan Murphy Leicester Tigers
Malcolm O'Kelly Leinster
Jean-Baptiste Poux Toulouse
William Servat Toulouse
Vincent Clerc Toulouse 73
Allan Jacobsen Edinburgh 72
Martin Castrogiovanni Calvisano, Leicester Tigers 71
Cédric Heymans Brive, Toulouse
Shane Jennings Leinster, Leicester Tigers, Leinster (2nd stint)
Jérôme Thion Montferrand, Perpignan, Biarritz
Vernon Cooper Llanelli, Scarlets 70
Florian Fritz Bourgoin, Toulouse
Simon Shaw London Wasps
Martin Corry Leicester Tigers 69
Louis Deacon Leicester Tigers 68
Girvan Dempsey Leinster
George Chuter Saracens, Leicester Tigers 67
John Kelly Munster
Grégory Lamboley Toulouse
Nicolas Mas Perpignan
Chris Paterson Edinburgh, Gloucester, Edinburgh (2nd stint)
Jamie Heaslip Leinster 66
Adam Jones Neath, Ospreys
Duncan Jones Neath, Ospreys
Eoin Reddan Munster, London Wasps, Leinster
David Skrela Colomiers, Stade Français, Toulouse, Clermont Auvergne
Chris Wyatt Llanelli, Scarlets, Bourgoin
Ben Kay Leicester Tigers 65
Julien Bonnaire Bourgoin, Clermont Auvergne 64
Yannick Bru Toulouse
Nicolas Brusque Pau, Biarritz
Romain Millo-Chluski Toulouse
Dimitri Yachvili Biarritz 63
Benoît August Stade Français, Biarritz 62
Mick O'Driscoll Munster, Perpignan, Munster (2nd stint)
Iestyn Thomas Ebbw Vale, Llanelli, Scarlets
Shane Byrne Leinster, Saracens 61
Reggie Corrigan Leinster
Thierry Dusautoir Biarritz, Toulouse
Dougie Hall Edinburgh, Glasgow Warriors 60
Dafydd James Pontypridd, Llanelli, Bridgend, Celtic Warriors, Harlequins, Scarlets, Cardiff Blues
Gethin Jenkins Celtic Warriors, Cardiff Blues
Benjamin Kayser Stade Français, Leicester Tigers, Stade Français (2nd stint), Castres Olympique, Clermont Auvergne
Christian Labit Toulouse, Northampton Saints
Gareth Thomas Cardiff, Bridgend, Celtic Warriors, Toulouse, Cardiff Blues
Andrew Trimble Ulster
Iain Balshaw Bath, Gloucester, Biarritz 59
Steve Borthwick Bath, Saracens
Frederic Michalak Toulouse, Toulon
Lewis Moody Leicester Tigers, Bath
Graham Rowntree Leicester Tigers
Perry Freshwater Leicester Tigers, Perpignan 58
Salvatore Perugini L'Aquila, Calvisano, Toulouse, Aironi
Trevor Brennan Leinster, Toulouse 57
Victor Costello Leinster
Justin Fitzpatrick Ulster, Castres Olympique, Ulster (2nd stint)
David Humphreys Ulster
Jonathan Thomas Swansea, Ospreys
Shane Williams Neath, Ospreys
Roger Wilson Ulster, Northampton Saints, Ulster (2nd stint)
Joe Worsley London Wasps
Philippe Bidabé Biarritz 56
Simon Easterby Llanelli, Scarlets
Anthony Horgan Munster
Gavin Thomas Bath, Ospreys, Scarlets, Newport Gwent Dragons
David Auradou Stade Français 55
Serge Betsen Biarritz, London Wasps
Tommy Bowe Ulster, Ospreys, Ulster (2nd stint)
Robin McBryde Llanelli, Scarlets
Yannick Nyanga Béziers, Toulouse
Shaun Payne Swansea, Munster
Frankie Sheahan Munster
Damien Traille Pau, Biarritz
Garan Evans Llanelli, Scarlets 54
Denis Hickie Leinster
Benoît Lecouls Toulouse, Biarritz, Toulouse (2nd stint)
Tom Voyce Bath, London Wasps, Gloucester
Paddy Wallace Ulster
Jason White Glasgow, Sale Sharks, Clermont Auvergne
Isaac Boss Ulster, Leinster 53
Lawrence Dallaglio London Wasps
Austin Healey Leicester Tigers
Alex King London Wasps, Clermont
Leon Lloyd Leicester Tigers, Gloucester
Mauro Bergamasco Petrarca, Benetton Treviso, Stade Français, Aironi
Kelly Brown Borders, Glasgow Warriors, Saracens
Pieter de Villiers Stade Français
Vincent Debaty Perpignan, Clermont Auvergne
Imanol Harinordoquy Pau, Biarritz Olympique
Deiniol Jones Bridgend, Celtic Warriors, Cardiff Blues
Rob Kearney Leinster
Eric Miller Leinster, Leicester Tigers, Ulster, Leinster (2nd stint)
Aurélien Rougerie Clermont Auvergne
Rimas Álvarez Kairelis Perpignan 51
Peter Buxton Newport, Gloucester
Lee Byrne Scarlets, Ospreys, Clermont Auvergne
Ben Cohen Northampton Saints, Sale Sharks
John Davies Neath, Llanelli, Scarlets
Martin Johnson Leicester Tigers
Al Kellock Edinburgh, Glasgow Warriors
Scott Murray Saracens, Edinburgh, Montauban, Castres Olympique
Brendan Williams Petrarca, Benetton Treviso
Nicolas Durand Béziers, Perpignan, Racing Métro 92, Toulon, Perpignan (2nd stint) 50
Ross Ford Borders, Edinburgh
Gary Longwell Ulster
Sonny Parker Pontypridd, Celtic Warriors, Ospreys
Julien Pierre Bourgoin, Clermont Auvergne
Matthew Rees Celtic Warriors, Scarlets, Cardiff Blues

Players with 500 or more Heineken Cup points

Player[9] Club(s) Points
Ronan O'Gara Munster 1,365
Stephen Jones Llanelli, Scarlets, Clermont Auvergne, Scarlets (2nd stint) 869
Dimitri Yachvili Biarritz 661
Diego Domínguez Milan, Stade Français 645
David Humphreys Ulster 564
Neil Jenkins Pontypridd, Cardiff, Celtic Warriors 502
David Skrela Colomiers, Stade Français, Toulouse, Clermont Auvergne 500

Players with 25 or more Heineken Cup tries

Player[10] Club(s) Tries
Vincent Clerc Toulouse 35
Brian O'Driscoll Leinster 33
Dafydd James Pontypridd, Llanelli, Bridgend, Celtic Warriors, Harlequins, Scarlets, Cardiff Blues 29
Shane Horgan Leinster 27
Gordon D'Arcy Leinster 26
Geordan Murphy Leicester Tigers 25


  1. ^ Official site
  2. ^ European Rugby Statement, The Rugby Paper, 10/4/14
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