Toulouse, the record four-time winner of rugby’s Heineken Cup, beat two-time champion Leicester 23-9 in the opening round of group matches. Northampton, Sale and Toulon also won.
Gael Fickou got the only try, with Luke McAlister kicking the rest of Toulouse’s points from six penalties. Toby Flood scored three penalties for Leicester.
Northampton beat Glasgow Warriors 24-15, while Sale defeated Cardiff Blues 34-33 as the other two English clubs in action yesterday won. Toulon beat French rival Montpellier 37-16 in the late match.
George Pisi got two tries for Northampton as the 2000 European club champion rallied from a 15-point deficit after 28 minutes to open with a win. Vas Artemyev and Steve Myler also touched down, with Myler and Ryan Lamb adding conversions.
Sale, competing in the Heineken Cup for a first time in three seasons, had second-half tries from Danny Cipriani, Mark Jennings and Tony Buckley in its victory. Alex Cuthbert got Cardiff’s three tries in the first half.
Two days ago, Leinster opened the defense of its title with a 9-6 win against the Exeter Chiefs. Saracens routed Edinburgh 45-0, Racing Metro beat Munster 22-17, Clermont Auvergne defeated Scarlets 49-16, Connacht beat Zebre 19-10, and Harlequins beat Biarritz 40-13.
Ulster, last season’s runner-up, defeated Castres 41-17 and Ospreys beat Benetton Treviso 38-17 on Oct. 12.
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christopher Elser at firstname.lastname@example.org