Edinburgh Secures 2009 Heineken Cup Final

ERC, Heineken Cup organisers, are delighted to confirm that Scottish Rugby has won the right to host the 14th Heineken Cup final on the weekend of 23 / 24 May, 2009 - the second time European club rugby's showpiece match will be staged in the Scottish capital. The 67,778 capacity Murrayfield Stadium, which previously staged the 2005 final when Toulouse clinched their third tournament triumph, will again host the world's biggest club rugby final and provide the setting for the climax of the European club season.ERC, Heineken Cup organisers, are delighted to confirm that Scottish Rugby has won the right to host the 14th Heineken Cup final on the weekend of 23 / 24 May, 2009 - the second time European club rugby's showpiece match will be staged in the Scottish capital.

The 67,778 capacity Murrayfield Stadium, which previously staged the 2005 final when Toulouse clinched their third tournament triumph, will again host the world's biggest club rugby final and provide the setting for the climax of the European club season.

This weekend will see thousands of fans from Ireland, France and across Europe converge on the Welsh capital and pack-out the 74,500 Millennium Stadium when Munster face Toulouse in the Cardiff 2008 Heineken Cup final. Cardiff 2008 will see the third successive capacity attendance at a Heineken Cup final and follows last season's World Record Club rugby attendance of over 81,076 fans at the London 2007 final at the Twickenham Stadium.

A crowd of over 51,000 were at Murrayfield for the all-French final three years ago when Stade Fran?ais Paris took Toulouse to extra time before Guy Noves' team edged it 18-12 for their unprecedented treble.

"We are delighted to be bringing the Heineken Cup final back to Scotland and congratulations to Scottish Rugby on securing the Heineken Cup 2009 final for Edinburgh," said ERC Chief Executive, Derek McGrath.

_x001C_The 2005 final at Murrayfield was a compelling match and the annual climax of the Heineken Cup tournament is now a must-see event - witness next Saturday's final at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff between Munster and Toulouse.

_x001C_Scottish sports fans can look forward to a festival of European rugby in Edinburgh in May 2009 and the City and region should also benefit from a significant financial windfall from staging the final. In 2005 the final produced a £15m injection into the Edinburgh and Scottish economy, while Wales benefited to the tune of £25 million in 2006 and London by £18 million in 2007. We look forward to once again working closely with Scottish Rugby to build another great Heineken Cup final weekend for Edinburgh and Scotland._x001D_

Scottish Rugby, Chief Executive Gordon McKie, welcomed the news stating,

_x001C_We are honoured and delighted to have secured one of the world's flagship sporting events and it once again demonstrates Scottish Rugby's commitment to hosting world class premium events at Murrayfield Stadium.

We very much look forward to working in partnership with our key stakeholders to ensure that the Heineken Cup Final 2009 is a fantastic success both for Edinburgh and Scotland._x001D_

Paul Bush, Chief Operating Officer of EventScotland, said: _x001C_Today's announcement from the ERC that Scottish Rugby will host the 2009 Heineken Cup Final is a fantastic piece of news._x001D_

_x001C_Edinburgh's hosting of the Heineken Cup Final in 2005 was a huge success so we look forward to welcoming the showpiece finale of Europe's premier club competition back to Murrayfield Stadium next year.

_x001C_The announcement also adds further credibility to Scotland's growing reputation as a destination for major events, providing a further boost to our achievements in hosting major events._x001D_

Tickets for the Edinburgh 2009 Heineken Cup final at Murrayfield Stadium went on pre-sale today Monday, 19 May to supporters who have previously purchased tickets early through Ticketmaster for the Cardiff 2006, London 2007 and Cardiff 2008 finals.

Tickets will go on general sale to the public on Wednesday, 21 May 2008 from 12 noon through ticketmaster.co.uk (tel: 0844 847 2357 or 00442086165111) and are priced at £25, £40 and £60. With concessions tickets at £12.50, £20 and £30 available for under 18s. Tickets may be subject to booking fees.

Scottish based fans can also purchase tickets from www.scottishrugby.org; via 0131 346 5100 (booking fee applies) or in person from Scottish Rugby's Ticket Centre at Murrayfield.


HEINEKEN CUP SEASON 2008 / 2009

2008

ROUND 1
10 / 11 / 12 October

ROUND 2
17 / 18 / 19 October

ROUND 3
5 / 6 / 7 December

ROUND 4
12 / 13 / 14 December

2009

ROUND 5
16 / 17 / 18 January

ROUND 6
23 / 24 / 25 January

QUARTER-FINALS
10 / 11 / 12 April

SEMI-FINALS
1 / 2 / 3 May

HEINEKEN CUP FINAL - EDINBURGH 2009
23 / 24 May


Heineken Cup Final Facts and Figures

? A total of 644,598 fans have gone through the turnstiles for the 12 Heineken Cup finals - an average of 53,717 per match. The first final, between Cardiff and Toulouse at the old Arms Park on 6 January, 1996, attracted a crowd of 21,800.

? The 2007 final, when London Wasps beat Leicester Tigers at Twickenham Stadium 12 months ago, was watched by a world record crowd for a club rugby match of 81,076.

? There are 223 players from the 12 match day 22-man squads who own Heineken Cup final winners' medals - 42 have two medals and Cedric Heymans is out on his own with three (with Brive in 1997 and Toulouse in 2003 and 2005). Among the 42 double winners are current Toulouse squad members Fabien Pelous, Jean Bouilhou, Cedric Heymans, Yannick Jauzion, Finau Maka, Jean-Baptiste Poux and William Servat.

? Players from 14 different nationalities are on the winners' roll of honour, headed by 72 Englishmen and 65 Frenchmen. There are also players from Ireland (45), Scotland (10), Wales (eight), South Africa and New Zealand (five each), Samoa (four), Argentina (three), Australia (two) and one from each of Italy, USA, Canada and Poland.

? The ten Scottish medal winners are : Andy Nicol, Dave Hilton, Eric Peters (Bath 1998); Simon Holmes, Budge Pountney, Don Mackinnon, Mattie Stewart, Richard Metcalfe, Craig Moir (Northampton Saints 2000); Mark McMillan (London Wasps 2007)

? The 12 Heineken Cup finals have been staged at seven grounds - Cardiff Arms Park (1996 and 1997), Stade Lescure (1998), Lansdowne Road (1999 and 2003), Twickenham (2000, 2004 and 2007), Parc des Princes (2001), Millennium Stadium (2002 and 2006) and Murrayfield (2005).

? The most points scored in a Heineken Cup final are the 64 rattled up at Parc des Princes in 2001. The 34 scored that day by Leicester Tigers is the most scored by a team in a final and the 30 scored by Stade Francais Paris is the most scored by a losing team.

? The most tries scored in a final are the four by Brive when they beat Leicester Tigers 28-9 in Cardiff in 1997. The 19 points winning margin is the biggest in the 11 finals.

? This 13th final will be the 898th tournament match while the 14th Heineken Cup final in Edinburgh will be match number 977.

For more information Contact:

John Corcoran, ERC Communications Manager, Mob: 00353 1 676 9286; Email:john.corcoran@ercrugby.com