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Luxembourg host Moldova for a place in the Trophy

After a long season of action it all comes down to one game this weekend to decide which of Luxembourg or Moldova’s men will be promoted from the Rugby Europe Conference into the Trophy for 2024/25.

The Josy Barthel Stadium in Luxembourg will be the venue at 6pm local time (4pm UTC) on Saturday as the sides meet in the access play-off encounter.

Luxembourg have got to this stage by winning four matches out of four to top Pool B, their most recent victory coming against Slovenia in April when they won 84-7.

In 2022/23, Luxembourg finished second in Conference 1 North behind Czechia, but they have stepped things up a level this time.

Moldova topped Pool C with three wins from three, their last outing before this showpiece play-off seeing them get the better of Bulgaria 48-6 earlier this month.

In 2022/23, Moldova were third in Conference 1 North, but they were level on points with Luxembourg which shows how evenly matched these sides are.

Luxembourg are currently 59th in the world rankings with Moldova 54th and this is a big opportunity for them both to get into the second tier of Rugby Europe competition, so expect neither team to hold back in what should be a thrilling 80 minutes.

Christian Olsen, the Luxembourg skipper, said:  “The team is very excited to play this game, it is an opportunity for us to validate the work we have put into reaching this moment over the last two years.

“There have been a lot of challenges along the way, but challenge is something we embrace and rise up to. We want to show that we deserve to be at the next level as well as demonstrating to other European nations that even though we are a small country we are strong.

“We hope that the leadership of the older players and the energy and flare of the new generation gives us enough weapons to come out on top and that we can play some exciting rugby along the way.

“No matter the outcome I am very proud of the whole team and grateful for the support, time, and dedication that the staff have given us - we are ready.”

Igor Misin, the Moldova captain, said:  “This game is very important not only for us, but for the entire rugby community from Moldova.

“We would love to get back to the place where we historically have been for a very long time, the Rugby Europe Trophy. We will be concentrating to fullest because we are facing a very well-prepared team.

“Let the best team win.” The game will be live on and on our YouTube channel. Also on this weekend is a friendly between Estonia v Finland, which kicks off at 1:30pm CET.

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