12 Dec, 14:42
Prop Cian Healy is expected to miss the start of the 2014 RBS 6 Nations after undergoing surgery on his injured ankle on Wednesday.
The announcement was made at the French launch of the 2012/13 tournaments which was held at the headquarters of France Télévisions in Paris today.
The event, which was attended by representatives of the seven French Heineken Cup clubs and by Stade Francais who are competing in the Amlin Challenge Cup, is one of four official launches organised by ERC in advance of the 2012/13 European club rugby season.
Further launches will be held in London (October 1 - Sky Studios), Dublin (October 2 - Aviva Stadium) and Rome (October 8 - Stadio Olimpico) over the next fortnight.
Two clubs - Exeter Chiefs (England) and Zebre (Italy) - are competing in the Heineken Cup for the first time this year, and five stadiums will be new to the world's most competitive tournament: King Baudouin Stadium in Brussels, Scotstoun Stadium (Glasgow Warriors), Salford City Stadium (Sale Sharks), Sandy Park (Exeter Chiefs) and Stadio XXV Aprile (Zebre).
In round 1, Racing Metro 92 will host Munster at the Stade de France and Toulouse will meet Leicester Tigers at Le Stadium.
In round 2, Castres Olympique are moving their game against Northampton Saints to Stade Ernest Wallon, while Saracens will take their clash with Racing Metro 92 to the King Baudouin Stadium.
Then in round 4, reigning champions Leinster will renew their rivalry with Clermont Auvergne at the Aviva Stadium.
With the Brussels fixture set to bring Heineken Cup action to Belgium for the first time, tournament games will have been played in the following 10 countries: England, France, Ireland, Italy, Scotland, Wales, Romania, Spain, Switzerland and Belgium.
The Amlin Challenge Cup will feature three newcomers to European club rugby in London Welsh (England), Rugby Mogliano (Italy) and Bizkaia Gernika RT (Spain).
Stade Francais will take the tournament to new French audiences by moving their three 'home' games to Le Havre, Le Mans and Valenciennes.
The Amlin Challenge Cup will kick off on Thursday, October 11 with the Heineken Cup getting underway the following day.
Both 2013 finals will be staged in Dublin with the Amlin Challenge Cup decider set for Friday, May 17 at the RDS (8pm) and the Heineken Cup final going ahead at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday, May 18 (5pm).
|Heineken Cup - Pool 2|
|Heineken Cup - Pool 3|
|Heineken Cup - Pool 4|
|Amlin Challenge Cup - Pool 1|