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Heineken Cup draw for 2010/11

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Leicester Tigers have been drawn in a pool with Scarlets, Perpignan and Benetton Treviso in next season's Heineken Cup.

Tigers, winners in 2001 and 2002 and finalists in two of the last four seasons, are the seeded team in Pool 5.

The draw was conducted this morning in Cardiff, venue for the 2011 final, by ERC chairman Jean-Pierre Lux and chief executive Derek McGrath.

Scarlets finished ninth in the Magners League last season and qualified for the Heineken Cup after Cardiff Blues’ victory in the Amlin Challenge Cup landed Wales a fourth spot in the tournament.

Tigers and Scarlets have met on five occasions in the Heineken Cup, including the semi-finals in 2002 and 2007.

Perpignan topped the French league in 2009/10 but lost in the final to first-time winners Clermont Auvergne in a reverse of the result 12 months earlier.

They have played Tigers four times in Europe, the most recent coming in 2008/09 when the home game was dominated by the arrival of All Blacks fly-half Dan Carter.

An international line-up featuring the likes of Nicolas Mas, Maxime Mermoz, Damien Chouly, Marius Tincu and former Tigers duo Perry Freshwater and Henry Tuilagi finished third in their Heineken Cup pool last season in a group led by Munster and Northampton Saints.

Italian champions seven times in the last decade, Benetton Treviso retained the Super 10 title after final victory over Viadana last month.

They are entering their 14th season of Heineken Cup competition and met Tigers in the pool stages of 2008/09. Last year Treviso were drawn in one of the competition’s toughest pools, paired with Munster, Northampton Saints and Perpignan, though they did spring a shock with a 9-8 win over their French visitors in Round One. They are in the same pool as Perpignan for the third successive season.

POOL 1: Cardiff Blues, Northampton Saints, Edinburgh, Castres Olympique
POOL 2: Leinster, ASM Clermont Auvergne, Saracens, Racing Metro 92
POOL 3: Munster, Ospreys, London Irish, RC Toulon
POOL 4: Biarritz Olympique Pays Basque, Bath Rugby, Ulster, Aironi Rugby
POOL 5: Leicester Tigers, Scarlets, Perpignan, Benetton Treviso
POOL 6: Toulouse, London Wasps, Glasgow Warriors, Newport Gwent Dragons

The order of fixtures, dates and times, will be determined in coming weeks following discussions between tournament organisers ERC and their broadcast partners.

Heineken Cup dates 2010/11: Round 1 – October 8/9/10; Round 2 – October 15/16/17; Round 3 – December 10/11/12; Round 4 – December 17/18/19; Round 5 – January 14/15/16; Round 6 – January 21/22/23; Quarter-finals – April 8/9/10; Semi-finals – April 30 May 1; Heineken Cup Finals – May 21/22