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European Under-18 Rugby Union Championship

European Under-18 Rugby Union Championship
Current season or competition:
30px 2014 European Under-18 Rugby Union Championship
Sport Rugby union
Instituted 2004
Number of teams 31 (2013)
Country Europe (FIRA-AER)
Holders 23x15px France (2015)

The European Under-18 Rugby Union Championship is an annual rugby union championship for Under-18 national teams, held since 2004. The championship is organised by rugby's European governing body, the FIRA – Association of European Rugby (FIRA-AER).[1]

It has been held alternatingly in France and Italy, except for 2012 when it was held in Spain. The past editions were won by France, who won the championship in 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010, and England, which won it in 2005, 2006 and 2012.[2] Ireland became the third nation to win the tournament when they beat England in the 2011 final.


The European Under-18 Rugby Union Championship was first held in 2004, in Treviso, Italy. It replaced the previously held European Under-18 Emergent Nations Championship, which had first been held in 2000.[3] The first championship in 2004 was won by France.[2]

The following two championships, held in Lille, France in 2005 and again in Treviso in 2006, were won by England. Alternating between France and Italy, the next four championships were held in Biarritz, Treviso again, Toulon and once more in Treviso in 2010. All four were taken out by France, but of Europes top rugby playing nations, England, Wales and Scotland did not take part in the latest edition.[2]

The 2011 edition of the competition saw the introduction of an elite division, above division one, the former A, made up of four teams, France, England, Wales and Ireland. The divisions below remained unchanged. It marked the first time that all countries participating in the six nations send a team to the European championship. The 2011 tournament was held in the regions of Armagnac and Bigorre, in southern France.[4] It was won by Ireland and saw the French team not reaching the final for the first time.


In 2010, the championship, similar to previous editions, was organised in an A, B and C Division, with A being the highest and C the lowest. Each division consisted of eight teams and each team played three competition games, with a quarter final, semi final and final/placing game.[5] The D division, unlike in the past, was held in a separate tournament in 2010.

The quarter finals were played according to a seeding list, with the winners moving on to the first to fourth place semi finals while the losers would enter the fifth to eighth place semi finals.[5]

The winners of the semi finals one to four would play in the division final while the losers would play for third place. Similarly, the winners of the fifth to eighth semi finals would play for fifth place while the losers would play for seventh.[5]

The winner of the A division was crowned European champions while the eighth placed team would be relegated to the B division. Similarly, the winner of B and C division would move up a division for 2011 while the last placed teams would be relegated. This meant, France was crowned European champions while Romania finished on the relegation spot. Portugal won the B division and earned promotion while the Ukraine was relegated and replaced by Sweden, the C champions.[5]

The 2011 format saw the introduction of a four-team elite division. Below this level, the divisions remained unchanged but were now numbered instead of being ordered by letters.[4]

In 2012 the modus was changed once more. The elite division now consisted of eight teams, as did the A and B divisions, with all three played at the same time and location while the C division consisted of four and the D division of three teams and were played separately.[6]

Championship finals

The past finals were:[2]

Emergent nations championship

Year Host Final Third place match
Winner Score Runner-up 3rd place Score 4th place
2000 23x15px Sofia 23x15px Belgium
2001 23x15px Split 23x15px Netherlands
2002 23x15px Prague 23x15px Belgium
2003 23x15px Amsterdam 23x15px Poland

European championship

Year Host Final Third place match
Winner Score Runner-up 3rd place Score 4th place
2004 23x15px Treviso 23x15px France
2005 [7] 23x15px Lille 23x15px England 16–9 23x15px France 23x15px Scotland 10–6 23x15px Italy
2006 [8] 23x15px Treviso 23x15px England 15–7 23x15px France 23x15px Italy 29–3 23x15px Scotland
2007 [9] 23x15px Dax 23x15px France 8–8 1 23x15px Ireland 23x15px England 52–9 23x15px Italy
2008 [10] 23x15px Treviso 23x15px France 12–5 23x15px Ireland 23x15px England 21–5 23x15px Italy
2009 [11] 23x15px Toulon 23x15px France 20–19 23x15px England 23x15px Ireland 51–10 23x15px Romania
2010 [12] 23x15px Treviso 23x15px France 27–3 23x15px Ireland 23x15px Georgia 18–15 23x15px Belgium
2011 [13] 23x15px Tarbes 23x15px Ireland 17–8 23x15px England 23x15px Wales 15–6 23x15px France
2012 [6] 23x15px Madrid 23x15px England 25–13 23x15px Ireland 23x15px France 10–7 23x15px Wales
2013 [14] 23x15px Grenoble 23x15px England 27–22 23x15px France 23x15px Ireland 40–0 23x15px Scotland
2014 [15] 23x15px Wronki 23x15px England 30–14 23x15px Ireland 23x15px Wales 31–30 23x15px France
2015 [16] 23x15px Toulouse 23x15px France 57–0 23x15px Georgia 23x15px England 39–12 23x15px Italy
  • 1 France won 4-3 on penalty kicks.

Divisional champions

The divisional champions from 2004 to 2010:

Year A B C D
2004 23x15px France 23x15px Croatia
2005 23x15px England 23x15px Portugal 23x15px Latvia 23x15px Hungary
2006 23x15px England 23x15px Romania 23x15px Netherlands 23x15px Austria
2007 23x15px France 23x15px Spain 23x15px Lithuania 23x15px Bulgaria
2008 23x15px France 23x15px Belgium 23x16px  Switzerland 23x15px Serbia
2009 23x15px France 23x15px Germany 23x15px Czech Republic 23x15px Luxembourg
2010 23x15px France 23x15px Portugal 23x15px Sweden 23x15px Moldova

The divisional champions after the reorganisation in 2011:

Year Elite A B C D
2011 23x15px Ireland 23x15px Scotland 23x15px Spain 23x15px Serbia 23x15px Croatia
2012 23x15px England 23x15px Belgium 23x15px Poland 23x15px Croatia 23x15px Austria
2013 23x15px England 23x15px Spain 23x15px Netherlands 23x15px Austria 23x15px Denmark
2014 23x15px England 23x15px Russia 23x15px Sweden 23x15px Latvia 23x15px Moldova
2015 23x15px France 23x15px Russia 23x15px Ukraine 23x15px Denmark 23x15px Andorra

Elite Division 2011

The games of the elite division:[17]

Semi-finals Final
1 23x15px France 17
4 23x15px Ireland 19
4 23x15px Ireland 17
2 23x15px England 8
2 23x15px England 38
3 23x15px Wales 34
3rd Place Final
1 23x15px France 6
3 23x15px Wales 15