Edinburgh will face Gloucester in the Challenge Cup final at Twickenham Stoop on Friday, the 1st May. Twenty teams from seven European countries qualified for the 2014-15 Challenge Cup, and playing in the final is a massive achievement for the Scots.

The Murrayfield side had a slow start at the beginning of the year, but have since put some hard work and could now become the first Scottish team to lift European silverware. They earned the place in the Challenge Cup final by winning 45-16 against Newport Gwent Dragons; their prop Alasdair Dickinson is convinced that his team’s improved form puts them in a good place going into the game against the Cherry and Whites.  The 31 year-old re-joined Edinburgh Rugby two season ago, after leaving for Gloucester in 2007, where he played for five years.

The Scottish side’s recent victory also includes a 37-0 whitewash of Zebre in the Guinness Pro12, previously known as the Celtic League, which involves twelve sides from Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales; the win against the Italian strugglers from Parma boosts the Scots’ chances of securing sixth place in the Pro12.

The Scots opponents, the Cherry and Whites, are the favourites for the title; the 2005/6 winners displayed a dramatic performance last Saturday to defeat Newcastle Falcons 42-40 at Kingsholm, and qualify for the Challenge Cup final; Gloucester played some extraordinary rugby on the night, as they came back and won against Falcons at the last minute of the match, after losing 13-27 at the break.

The Cherry and Whites have recently been fined £5,000 and received a suspended two-point deduction for playing Mariano Galarza during the Aviva Premiership match against the Sale Sharks on the 29th March, while he did not have effective registration with Gloucester Rugby. The 28 year- old Argentine was subsequently correctly registered for the European Challenge Cup semi-final game, which Gloucester played against Exeter Chiefs.

On Saturday, the 2nd May, Twickenham Stoop also hosts the European Rugby Champions Cup Final between two French rugby giants, Clermont Auvergne and Toulon.

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