2003 European Challenge Cup
2003/04 Parker Pen Challenge Cup

The 2003 European Challenge Cup was the 2nd tier of European club rugby, after the Heineken Cup.

There were 28 teams in the competition and they came from 6 different countries, with no Welsh teams following the introduction of regional teams in Wales and all those teams playing in the Heineken Cup.

This was the last year of the knock-out format that had been in use for the past 2 seasons. The teams played their opposition on a home and away basis. The team with the best aggregate score over the two games progressed to the next round. With 28 teams in this competition, the 'best' 2 losing teams were also progressed into the 2nd round of the competition. The final was a single match.

There was also another, 3rd tier competition held, the European Shield. This was played for amongst the 12 first round losers from the European Challenge Cup matches. The competition followed the same knock-out format as the European Challenge Cup.


Teams playing in the 2003/04 European Challenge Cup were:

France

  • Pau
  • Narbonne
  • Montpellier
  • Brive
  • Grenoble
  • Béziers
  • Castres Olympique
  • Colomiers
  • Montauban
  • Montferrand

England

  • Saracens
  • London Irish
  • Bath
  • Harlequins
  • Newcastle Falcons
  • Rotherham

Italy

  • L'Aquila
  • Overmach Parma
  • Rugby Viadana
  • Gran Parma
  • Leonessa
  • Petrarca Padova
  • Rovigo
  • Rugby Roma

Spain

  • El Salvador
  • Valladolid RAC

Ireland

  • Connacht

Scotland

  • Glasgow


2003 European Challenge Cup

Round 1

1st Leg

December 5

December 6









December 7





2nd Leg

December 12


December 13








December 14


Rotherham

Leonessa

Valladolid RAC

Rugby Roma

Gran Parma

L'Aquila

Rovigno

Colomiers

Montpellier

Brive

El Savador

Montauban

Overmach Parma

Béziers



Glasgow

Narbonne

Connacht

Bath

Harlequins

Petrarca Padova

Montferrand

Castres Olympique

Pau

Grenoble

Newcastle Falcons

Rugby Viadana

London Irish

Saracens


v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v



v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v


Narbonne

Montferrand

Newcastle Falcons

Saracens

Grenoble

Bath

Castres Olympique

Petraca Padova

Glasgow

Rugby Viadana

Harlequins

London Irish

Pau

Connacht



Montpellier

Rotherham

Béziers

L'Aquila

El Savador

Colomiers

Leonessa

Rovigno

Overmach Parma

Gran Parma

Valladolid RAC

Brive

Montauban

Rugby Roma


Millmoor

Brescia

Valladolid

Rome

Parma

L'Aquila

Rovigo

Colomiers

Montpellier

Brive

Vallalodid

Montauban

Parma

Béziers



Glasgow

Narbonne

Galway

Bath

London

Padua

Clermont-Ferrand

Castres

Pau

Grenoble

Newcastle

Llanelli

Reading

Watford


10

0

10

13

10

11

14

37

11

39

18

30

28

10



38

35

11

50

63

20

58

75

25

41

66

38

36

82


17

55

71

45

35

75

53

12

30

3

31

26

33

18



13

13

13

0

3

38

3

10

6

6

27

22

24

5

1st Round Aggregate Results

Winners

Bath

Montferrand

Saracens

Castres Olympique

Newcastle Falcons

Harlequins

Grenoble

Glasgow

Colomiers

Narbonne

Pau

Brive

London Irish

Connacht

Losers

L'Aquila

Leonessa

Rugby Roma

Rovigo

Valladolid RAC

El Salvador

Gran Parma

Montpellier

Petrarca Padova

Rotherham

Overmach Parma

Rugby Viadana

Montauban

Béziers

Aggregate Score

125 - 11

113 - 3

127 - 18

128 - 24

137 - 37

94 - 21

76 - 16

68 - 24

75 - 32

52 - 23

58 - 34

61 - 41

62 - 54

29 - 23

Match Points

4-0

4-0

4-0

4-0

4-0

4-0

4-0

4-0

4-0

4-0

4-0

2-2

2-2

2-2

Points Margin

114

110

109

104

100

73

60

44

43

29

24

20

8

6


2003 European Challenge Cup

Round 2

1st Leg

January 10


January 11






2nd Leg



Connacht

Montauban

Newcastle Falcons

Brive

Colomiers

Grenoble

London Irish

Saracens


Glasgow

Bath

Harlequins

Pau

Béziers

Narbonne

Montferrand

Castres Olympique


v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v


v

v

v

v

v

v

v

v


Pau

Harlequins

Montferrand

Castres Olympique

Bath

Béziers

Narbonne

Glasgow


Saracens

Colomiers

Montauban

Connacht

Grenoble

London Irish

Newcastle Falcons

Brive


Galway

Montauban

Newcastle

Brive

Colomiers

Grenoble

Reading

Watford


Glasgow

Bath

London

Pau

Béziers

Narbonne

Clermont-Ferrand

Castres


29

8

10

30

25

15

20

37


33

26

36

10

24

29

25

31


7

43

3

17

32

19

13

6


5

17

17

6

8

10

13

28

2nd Round Aggregate Results

Winners

Harlequins

Béziers

Bath

Connacht

Narbonne

Brive

Montferrand

Saracens

Losers

Montauban

Grenoble

Colomiers

Pau

London Irish

Castres Olympique

Newcastle Falcons

Glasgow

Aggregate Score

79 - 25

43 - 23

58 - 42

35 - 17

42 - 30

58 - 48

28 - 23

42 - 39

Match Points

4-0

4-0

4-0

2-2

2-2

2-2

2-2

2-2

Points Margin

54

20

16

18

12

10

5

3


Quarter-Finals

1st Leg

January 24



January 25

2nd Leg

January 31


February 1



Harlequins

Béziers

Narbonne

Montferrand


Connacht

Bath

Brive

Saracens


v

v

v

v


v

v

v

v


Brive

Bath

Connacht

Saracens


Narbonne

Béziers

Harlequins

Montferrand


London

Béziers

Narbonne

Clermont-Ferrand


Galway

Bath

Brive

Watford


41

24

18

26


16

26

36

18


8

19

27

10


10

7

20

14

Quarter-Final Aggregate Points

Winners

Connacht

Harlequins

Bath

Montferrand

Losers

Narbonne

Brive

Béziers

Saracens

Aggregate Score

43 - 28

61 - 44

45 - 31

40 - 28

Match Points

4-0

2-2

2-2

2-2

Points Margin

15

17

14

12


Semi-Finals

1st Leg

April 10

April 11

2nd Leg

April 24

April 25


Bath

Harlequins


Montferrand

Connacht


v

v


v

v


Montferrand

Connacht


Bath

Harlequins


Bath

London


Clermont-Ferrand

Galway


29

31


38

23


15

22


22

18

Semi-Final Aggregate Points

Winners

Harlequins

Montferrand

Losers

Connacht

Bath

Aggregate Score

49 - 45

53 - 51

Match Points

2-2

2-2

Points Margin

4

2


Final

May 22

Montferrand

v

Harlequins

Reading

26

27