belfasttelegraph

Friday 11 July 2014

Dublin to host 2013 Heineken final

Aviva Stadium

The 2013 Heineken Cup final will be staged at the Aviva Stadium, tournament organisers ERC announced on Thursday.

The competition's showpiece will return to Dublin for the first time since 2003 when Toulouse beat Perpignan 22-17 at the old Lansdowne Road.

It will be the Heineken Cup's 18th year, with Twickenham already having been selected to host next season's final.

Leinster defeated Leicester and Toulouse at the Aviva Stadium en route to winning their second European crown last season.

ERC chief executive Derek McGrath is confident the venue will do the occasion justice.

"The Aviva Stadium is a world-class venue which has quickly established a close affinity with the Heineken Cup having staged three matches last season," said McGrath.

"The Heineken Cup final has become one of the most prestigious sporting fixtures in the European calendar and it now requires long-range planning in order to deliver the spectacle we enjoyed in Cardiff just over a fortnight ago.

"Last year we confirmed the final venues for the following two seasons, and today's announcement allows ERC to prepare the way for Dublin in 2013 while we continue to work with Twickenham on next season's final in May 2012.

"Ireland has provided four Heineken Cup champions in the past six seasons and Irish rugby is steeped in the history of the tournament since it began 16 years ago.

"The decision of the ERC Board to bring the Heineken Cup final back to Dublin is further recognition of the passion that Irish fans have for the tournament."