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RPI analysis of Champions Cup

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How do the Heineken Champions Cup pools stack up on the RugbyPass Index?

According to the RugbyPass Index (RPI), Pool 2 of the Heineken Champions Cup, is set to be the ‘Pool of Death’ this season.

With a combined score between the four clubs of 266, the quartet of Castres, Exeter Chiefs, Gloucester and Munster make the pool, on paper, the strongest in the competition.

Exeter and Munster lead the way with scores of 72, with reigning Top 14 champions Castres sitting on 63. Unfortunately for Gloucester, their score of 49 doesn’t leave them too much hope of emerging from the pool, but they are set to welcome Franco Mostert and Jaco Kriel to XV, which should help boost their chances.

As for the most competitive pool, that accolade falls to Pool 4, which consists of Leicester Tigers, Racing 92, Scarlets and Ulster.

Leicester, the lowliest ranked team, and Racing, the highest ranked team, are separated by just 13 points on the RPI. Racing (65) are closely followed by Scarlets, who are at 62, whilst Leicester’s 52 is not far behind Ulster’s 54. With so little separating all four teams, every penalty, try and tackle could matter in Pool 4.

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Watch: Johnny Sexton discusses Leinster’s Champions Cup defence

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The pool with the least quality, per the RPI, is Pool 5.

Montpellier lead the way with 63, followed by Toulon at 57, Edinburgh at 55 and finally Newcastle Falcons on 42. It is the only pool in the competition without multiple teams rated at 60 or above and its combined total of 217 is 17 points less than the next worst pool, Pool 5.

Pool 3 sits in second spot to Pool 2 in terms of overall quality, with Cardiff Blues (56), Glasgow Warriors (61), Lyon (69) and Saracens (72) boasting a combined total of 258, just eight points off of Pool 2’s total.

If you’re looking for a team to dominate a group, then look no further than Pool 1, where Leinster, the highest ranked team in the competition at 75, have a 16-point advantage over their nearest rivals Toulouse (59). The two other sides in Pool 1, Bath and Wasps, sit at 45 and 57 respectively.

Check out all the latest movements on the RPI by clicking here.

In other news: Connacht set for €30m redevelopment for the Sportsground.

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How do the Heineken Champions Cup pools stack up on the RugbyPass Index?