Irish Interprovincial champions Leinster will be, understandably, keen to hang on to the Celtic crown they deprived Munster of at Lansdowne Road in last season's gripping final.
In an interview given earlier today Lenister Coach Matt Williams, stated "It will be great for us to launch our defence of the Celtic League title at 'Fortress Donnybrook' - although we obviously know the quality of Pontypridd". "We greatly enjoyed last season's Celtic League, which galvanised the provincial structure in Ireland".
As with the first Celtic League season, the teams are divided into two groups; Pool 1 comprising of Edinburgh, Swansea, Ebbw Vale, Ulster, Llanelli, Munster, Neath and Caerphilly.
Pool 2 is made up of Leinster, Pontypridd, Cardiff, Glasgow, Newport, Bridgend, Borders and Connacht.
The qualifying rounds will be finalised in late October and the final will be contested on the weekend of February 1, 2003.