Investec Champions Cup challenge for DHL Stormers

PUBLISHED: December 5, 2023

The DHL Stormers will embark on the toughest challenge in club rugby when they kick-off their Investec Champions Cup campaign this weekend.

The Investec Champions Cup is an elite competition that sees the top eight sides from the Vodacom United Rugby Championship, English Premiership and French Top 14 battle it out for top honours.

In their first-ever Investec Champions Cup last season the DHL Stormers won a home play-off at DHL Stadium against Harlequins to go through to the last eight, then lost out against Exeter Chiefs away in their quarterfinal.

The format of the competition has since changed slightly, now featuring four pools of six teams instead of two pools of 12.

Having finished as runners-up in the Vodacom United Rugby Championship last season, the DHL Stormers now face away matches against Leicester Tigers and Stade Francais and home games at DHL Stadium against defending champions La Rochelle and Sale Sharks.

The first challenge is at Welford Road on Sunday against a Leicester Tigers side that features South African talent such as Handre Pollard, Jasper Wiese and Hanro Liebenberg.

Six days later on Saturday 16 December they will take on French juggernaut and back-to-back Investec Champions Cup winners La Rochelle, who have former DHL Stormers Dillyn Leyds and Raymond Rhule among their ranks.

The match against La Rochelle (BUY TICKETS HERE) is the first of the Summer Sundowners, which are four blockbuster games at DHL Stadium in the festive period.

Following two big Vodacom United Rugby Championship derbies against Vodacom Bulls on December 23 (BUY TICKETS HERE) and the Hollywoodbets Sharks on December 30 (BUY TICKETS HERE) to end the year, the Investec Champions Cup action will resume for the DHL Stormers with a home game against a Sale Sharks side which boasts former DHL Stormers Ernst van Rhyn, Cobus Wiese and Rob du Preez on January 13 (BUY TICKETS HERE).

The pool stage will conclude for the DHL Stormers on January 21, with a trip to Paris to take on Stade Francais.

From there the top 16 teams will advance to the knock-out phase of the competition, with the winner set to be crowned in the showpiece final at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

While it will be a huge challenge against quality opposition, the DHL Stormers will embrace the opportunity to show what they can do against the best in the world and do their faithful supporters proud.