Stats & Facts: Lyon v RC Toulon - Challenge Cup Final

Stats & Facts: Lyon v RC Toulon - Challenge Cup Final

Ahead of Friday evening's EPCR Challenge Cup final between Lyon and RC Toulon, here are some stats and facts ahead of the final.



LYON v RC TOULON - Friday, 27 May 2022

Venue Stade Vélodrome

Kick-off 21:00 (local, 20:00 UK)

Referee Luke Pearce (Eng)

Assistant Referee 1 Andrew Brace (Ire)
Assistant Referee 2 Frank Murphy (Ire)

TMO Ian Tempest (Eng)

Citing Commissioner Ed Kenny (Ire)


• With Lyon appearing in a first European final, and with RC Toulon never having won the title, one thing is certain ahead of Friday evening’s final in Marseille – there will a new name on the EPCR Challenge Cup.


• This will be the third meeting between Lyon and RC Toulon in the EPCR Challenge Cup, with Toulon winning both previous fixtures by an average of 13 points; this will be the seventh time that an EPCR Challenge Cup final has been contested by two French sides.


• Lyon have reached their first European final having won all seven of their games in this season’s EPCR Challenge Cup, scoring an average of 30 points per match in the process; they have only conceded over 18 points in just one of their last five matches in the competition.


• RC Toulon have won five of their six games in this season’s EPCR Challenge Cup (L1); however, their only loss came against TOP 14 opposition (17-20 v Biarritz Olympique); they had won eight of their last nine games against fellow French opposition prior to their defeat against Biarritz (L1).


• The winner will become the 17th club to lift the trophy in what will be the seventh all-French final.


• RC Toulon are aiming to become the fifth club in the history of European competition to win both the EPCR Challenge and the Heineken Champions Cup. To date, Bath Rugby, Leinster Rugby, Northampton Saints and Wasps have completed the coveted double.


• Lyon’s Léo Berdeu is this season’s tournament top scorer so far with 61 points from six appearances.

Leo BERDEU of Lyon Olympique Universitaire (LOU) during the Challenge Cup semi-final match between Lyon and London Wasps at MATMUT Stadium on May 14, 2022 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Hugo Pfeiffer/Icon Sport via Getty Images)

• RC Toulon will be hoping to make it fourth time lucky having been defeated in the EPCR Challenge Cup finals of 2010, 2012 and 2020,  the joint-most in the competition's history.


• Lyon’s Georgian wing, Davit Niniashvili, is top of the statistics charts for metres (503) and offloads (11).

LYON, FRANCE - MAY 14: Davit Niniashvili of Lyon looks on during the EPCR Challenge Cup Semi Final match between Lyon and Wasps at Matmut Stadium on May 14, 2022 in Lyon, France. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

• RC Toulon Head Coach, Franck Azéma, was a tournament winner with Montferrand – now ASM Clermont Auvergne – in 1999, while the club’s Attack and Skills Coach, Julien Dupuy, was successful with Stade Francais Paris in 2017.


• Toulon’s Director of Rugby, Laurent Emmanuelli, also won with Clermont in 2007, when the Lyon Director of Rugby, Pierre Mignoni, was a teammate.


• Although both Mathieu Bastareaud and Romain Taofifenua were Heineken Champions Cup winners in the past with the RC Toulon, Mickael Ivaldi is the only player in the Lyon tournament squad to have experienced Challenge Cup success as a replacement for Montpellier Hérault Rugby in the 2016 final.


• Three of Toulon’s tournament squad have previously tasted success in the Challenge Cup. Sergio Parisse and Raphael Lakafia were winners with Stade Francais Paris in 2017, while Quinn Roux won with Leinster Rugby in 2013.


• The Stade Vélodrome will be hosting a European club final for the second time. In 2010, the venue famously set an attendance record of 48,990 for a Challenge Cup final when the Cardiff Blues defeated RC Toulon for whom Pierre Mignoni was a second-half replacement.


• Gervais Cordin of Toulon has beaten the most defenders so far this season with an impressive total of 19 from four appearances.

Gervais CORDIN of Toulon during the Top 14 match between Toulon and Pau on May 21, 2022 in Toulon, France. (Photo by Johnny Fidelin/Icon Sport via Getty Images)

• Lyon’s Charlie Ngatai, who was a winner with Chiefs in 2013, and Jordan Taufau, successful with the Crusaders in 2017 and 2019, could add their names to the list of players who have won the EPCR Challenge Cup and Super Rugby double.


•  Toulon have won their last six matches in a row across all competitions. 


• Lyon head into the match off the back of a 42-10 loss to Bordeaux in the Top 14.


• Only Glasgow (13) have averaged more 22 entries per game than Lyon (12.7) in the EPCR Challenge Cup this season, while no side has conceded fewer 22 entries than RC Toulon in the competition in 2021/22 (7 per game).


• Lyon boast the best ruck success rate in this season’s EPCR Challenge Cup (97%) while they’ve also averaged the most line breaks (6.6), defenders beaten (25.1) and offloads per game (12.7) in the competition in 2021/22.


• Only four players have made more than five line breaks in this season’s EPCR Challenge Cup and they all play for Lyon: Leo Berdeu (7), Ethan Dumortier (6), Davit Niniashvili (6) and Clement Laporte (6). Niniashvilli has also completed more offloads (11) and made more carry meters than any other player this term (503)


• No player has made more dominant tackles in this season’s EPCR Challenge Cup than RC Toulon’s Charles Ollivon (5); Ollivon made 18 successful tackles against Saracens in the last round, the most of any player in the semi-finals.


• Toulon’s Gabin Villiere has scored four tries in four appearances in the EPCR Challenge Cup this season, including a brace in the semi-final against Saracens, only Gloucester’s Santiago Socino (5) has scored more tries this season; Villiere has also made six breakdown steals in the competition this season, two more than the next best back in that ranking, his teammate Baptiste Serin (4).

TOULON, FRANCE - MAY 14: Gabin Villiere and Baptiste Serin of Toulon celebrate a penalty during the EPCR Challenge Cup Semi Final match between RC Toulon and Saracens at Stade Mayol on May 14, 2022 in Toulon, France. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)


Head-to-head results in the Challenge Cup

19/11/2011 Lyon 19-26 RC Toulon 

15/01/2012 RC Toulon 29-10 Lyon


Tied EPCR Challenge Cup final

If the scores are tied at the end of full time, then 20 minutes (two periods of 10 minutes) of extra time will be played.

If at the end of extra time the scores are still level, then the winners will be the team which has scored the most tries in the game, including extra time.

If the teams are level on points and tries at the end of extra time, then the winners will be determined by a placekicking competition as follows:

Each team will be asked to nominate THREE goalkickers.

The kickers need not be predetermined, but they must come from the players on the pitch at the final whistle. No substituted or dismissed player will be permitted to take part.

The end at which the competition takes place will be determined by a toss of a coin. The team to kick first will also be determined by a toss of a coin.

Each kicker will have two kicks from designated positions on the 22 and 10 metre lines and after each team has completed their six kicks a winner will be declared. If the teams remain deadlocked, the competition will continue on a sudden-death basis.

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