2002–03 English Premiership (rugby union)

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2002-2003 Zurich Premiership
Countries  England
Champions London Wasps (3rd title)
Runners-up Gloucester
Relegated Bristol
Matches played 139
Attendance 1,183,972
(average 8,518 per match)

The 2002-03 Zurich Premiership was the 16th season of the top flight of the English domestic rugby union competitions.

The Zurich Championship which had been competed for in seasons 2000–01 and 2001–02 was dropped from this season.

Participating teams[edit]

Locations of the 2002-03 Zurich Premiership teams
Team Stadium Capacity City/Area
Bath Bath 8,200 Bath, Somerset
Bristol Shoguns Memorial Stadium[n 1] 12,100 Bristol, Avon
Gloucester Kingsholm 11,000 Gloucester, Gloucestershire
Harlequins The Stoop 8,500 Twickenham, London
Leeds Tykes Headingley Stadium 22,250 Leeds, West Yorkshire
Leicester Tigers Welford Road 16,815 Leicester, Leicestershire
London Irish Madejski Stadium 24,161 Reading, Berkshire
London Wasps Adams Park 10,000 High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire
Newcastle Falcons Kingston Park 10,000 Newcastle upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear
Northampton Saints Franklin's Gardens 12,500 Northampton, Northamptonshire
Sale Heywood Road 5,700 Sale, Greater Manchester
Saracens Vicarage Road 22,000 Watford, Hertfordshire
Notes
  1. ^ *Bristol Shoguns would also play a home game at Ashton Gate in Bristol on 4 May 2003

Table[edit]

Club Played Won Drawn Lost Points For Points Against Points Difference Tries For Tries Against Try Bonus Losing Bonus Points
1 Gloucester (F) 22 17 2 3 617 396 +221 67 35 7 3 82
2 London Wasps (C) 22 13 2 7 553 460 +93 55 36 6 5 67
3 Northampton Saints (SF) 22 13 0 9 512 376 +136 52 24 5 5 62
4 Sale Sharks 22 12 2 8 556 470 +86 61 46 8 2 62
5 Leeds Tykes 22 12 2 8 478 435 +43 38 39 1 5 58
6 Leicester Tigers 22 12 0 10 448 396 +52 44 32 4 3 55
7 Harlequins 22 9 0 13 461 560 -99 43 60 3 5 44
8 Saracens 22 8 0 14 499 587 -88 49 61 5 5 42
9 London Irish 22 8 1 13 432 485 -53 32 46 2 4 40
10 Newcastle Falcons 22 8 0 14 388 545 -157 31 58 3 5 40
11 Bath 22 7 2 13 385 490 -105 33 44 1 3 36
12 Bristol (R) 22 7 1 14 504 633 -129 47 71 3 3 36
Source:Guinness Premiership
Green background denotes qualification for the playoffs. These teams and those highlighted in blue qualified for the 2003–04 Heineken Cup.

Wasps won the 2002–03 Parker Pen Challenge Cup therefore automatically qualifying for the 2003–04 Heineken Cup. WIth Leicester Tigers winning the Zurich Wildcard Final, the final 2003–04 Heineken Cup berth was awarded to Leeds Tykes, placed fifth in the league.[1]

Results[edit]

Week 1[edit]

30 August 2002
19:45
Sale Sharks 24 – 21 Northampton Saints
Heywood Road
Attendance: 5,313
31 August 2002
14:00
Leeds Tykes 26 – 13 Leicester Tigers
Headingley
Attendance: 4,301
31 August 2002
15:00
NEC Harlequins 19 – 25 Gloucester
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 7,015
1 September 2002
14:30
Newcastle Falcons 24 – 17 London Wasps
Kingston Park
Attendance: 5,263
1 September 2002
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 30 – 45 Saracens
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 4,761
1 September 2002
15:00
London Irish 22 – 24 Bath
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 9,203

Week 2[edit]

7 September 2002
14:00
Northampton Saints 31 – 13 Newcastle Falcons
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 10,213
7 September 2002
15:00
Gloucester 44 – 8 Sale Sharks
Kingsholm
Attendance: 9,544
7 September 2002
15:00
Leicester Tigers 30 – 6 Harlequins
Welford Road
Attendance: 15,387
8 September 2002
14:30
Leeds Tykes 41 – 16 London Irish
Headingley
Attendance: 3,190
8 September 2002
15:00
London Wasps 38 – 35 Bristol Shoguns
Adams Park
Attendance: 7,171
8 September 2002
15:00
Saracens 28 – 3 Bath
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 10,068

Week 3[edit]

13 September 2002
19:45
The Sharks 29 – 16 Leicester Tigers
Heywood Road
Attendance: 5,678
14 September 2002
14:00
Bath Rugby 27 – 27 London Wasps
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 8,200
14 September 2002
15:00
NEC Harlequins 23 – 33 Leeds Tykes
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 5,352
15 September 2002
14:30
Newcastle Falcons 19 – 22 Gloucester
Kingston Park
Attendance: 5,304
15 September 2002
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 28 – 36 Northampton Saints
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 4,674
15 September 2002
15:00
London Irish 32 – 10 Saracens
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 7,177

Week 4[edit]

20 September 2002
20:00
Leeds Tykes 29 – 29 Sale Sharks
Headingley
Attendance: 5,123
21 September 2002
14:00
Gloucester 45 – 18 Bristol Shoguns
Kingsholm
Attendance: 10,117
21 September 2002
15:00
Leicester Tigers 52 – 9 Newcastle Falcons
Welford Road
Attendance: 15,656
21 September 2002
15:00
NEC Harlequins 29 – 19 London Irish
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 7,223
21 September 2002
15:00
Northampton Saints 24 – 3 Bath
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 9,560
22 September 2002
15:00
London Wasps 51 – 23 Saracens
Adams Park
Attendance: 8,512

Week 5[edit]

27 September 2002
19:45
The Sharks 20 – 16 Harlequins
Heywood Road
Attendance: 5,613
28 September 2002
14:00
Saracens 31 – 19 Northampton Saints
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 6,289
28 September 2002
14:15
Bath Rugby 21 – 21 Gloucester
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 8,200
29 September 2002
14:30
Newcastle Falcons 27 – 20 Leeds Tykes
Kingston Park
Attendance: 5,457
29 September 2002
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 25 – 20 Leicester Tigers
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 6,237
29 September 2002
15:00
London Irish 21 – 31 London Wasps
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 9,267

Week 6[edit]

5 October 2002
14:00
The Sharks 36 – 14 London Irish
Heywood Road
Attendance: 4,514
5 October 2002
15:00
Gloucester 44 – 14 Saracens
Kingsholm
Attendance: 10,439
5 October 2002
15:00
Leicester Tigers 22 – 20 Bath
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,811
5 October 2002
15:00
NEC Harlequins 47 – 23 Newcastle Falcons
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 7,923
5 October 2002
15:00
Northampton Saints 34 – 20 London Wasps
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 9,888
6 October 2002
14:30
Leeds Tykes 25 – 13 Bristol Shoguns
Headingley
Attendance: 4,420

Week 7[edit]

26 October 2002
14:00
London Wasps 23 – 16 Gloucester
Adams Park
Attendance: 8,768
26 October 2002
14:15
Bath Rugby 20 – 22 Leeds Tykes
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 8,200
27 October 2002
14:30
Newcastle Falcons 31 – 20 Sale Sharks
Kingston Park
Attendance: 4,245
27 October 2002
15:00
London Irish 12 – 14 Northampton Saints
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 7,579
27 October 2002
15:00
Saracens 18 – 26 Leicester Tigers
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 10,531

Week 8[edit]

1 November 2002
19:45
The Sharks 28 – 14 Bristol Shoguns
Heywood Road
Attendance: 4,688
2 November 2002
14:00
NEC Harlequins 18 – 9 Bath
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 8,311
2 November 2002
15:00
Gloucester 18 – 9 Northampton Saints
Kingsholm
Attendance: 11,000
2 November 2002
15:00
Leicester Tigers 9 – 6 London Wasps
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,845
3 November 2002
14:30
Leeds Tykes 27 – 18 Saracens
Headingley
Attendance: 5,015
3 November 2002
14:30
Newcastle Falcons 16 – 24 London Irish
Kingston Park
Attendance: 4,515

Week 9[edit]

9 November 2002
12:00
Northampton Saints 3 – 16 Leicester Tigers
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 12,600
10 November 2002
14:15
Bath Rugby 24 – 18 Sale Sharks
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 7,430
10 November 2002
14:30
London Irish 19 – 40 Gloucester
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 8,449
10 November 2002
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 38 – 10 Newcastle Falcons
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 4,342
10 November 2002
15:00
London Wasps 27 – 27 Leeds Tykes
Adams Park
Attendance: 4,475
10 November 2002
15:00
Saracens 36 – 30 Harlequins
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 6,634

Week 10[edit]

15 November 2002
19:45
Leicester Tigers 20 – 15 Gloucester
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,845
15 November 2002
19:45
The Sharks 37 – 26 Saracens
Heywood Road
Attendance: 5,196
17 November 2002
14:30
Leeds Tykes 26 – 19 Northampton Saints
Headingley
Attendance: 4,017
17 November 2002
14:30
Newcastle Falcons 20 – 24 Bath
Kingston Park
Attendance: 4,532
17 November 2002
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 32 – 32 London Irish
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 5,005
17 November 2002
15:00
NEC Harlequins 27 – 14 London Wasps
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 7,252

Week 11[edit]

23 November 2002
12:00
Northampton Saints 35 – 7 Harlequins
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 8,296
24 November 2002
14:15
Bath Rugby 19 – 30 Bristol Shoguns
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 8,200
24 November 2002
14:30
Gloucester 28 – 10 Leeds Tykes
Kingsholm
Attendance: 10,276
24 November 2002
15:00
London Irish 27 – 7 Leicester Tigers
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 10,605
24 November 2002
15:00
London Wasps 25 – 32 Sale Sharks
Adams Park
Attendance: 5,242
24 November 2002
15:00
Saracens 17 – 13 Newcastle Falcons
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 5,742

Week 12[edit]

29 November 2002
19:45
The Sharks 36 – 18 Bath
Heywood Road
Attendance: 5,700
30 November 2002
15:00
Gloucester 25 – 20 London Irish
Kingsholm
Attendance: 10,217
30 November 2002
15:00
NEC Harlequins 36 – 32 Saracens
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 7,714
30 November 2002
17:35
Leicester Tigers 12 – 25 Northampton Saints
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,875
1 December 2002
14:30
Leeds Tykes 15 – 18 London Wasps
Headingley
Attendance: 4,751
1 December 2002
14:30
Newcastle Falcons 12 – 20 Bristol Shoguns
Kingston Park
Attendance: 3,273

Week 13[edit]

27 December 2002
15:00
London Wasps 26 – 13 Leicester Tigers
Adams Park
Attendance: 10,000
28 December 2002
14:15
Bath Rugby 23 – 9 Harlequins
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 8,200
28 December 2002
14:30
Northampton Saints 13 – 16 Gloucester
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 12,500
29 December 2002
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 18 – 6 Sale Sharks
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 5,642
29 December 2002
15:00
London Irish 20 – 0 Newcastle Falcons
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 10,877
29 December 2002
15:00
Saracens 11 – 6 Leeds Tykes
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 9,328

Week 14[edit]

3 January 2003
19:00
Leeds Tykes 20 – 7 Bath
Headingley
Attendance: 4,553
3 January 2003
19:45
The Sharks 38 – 3 Newcastle Falcons
Heywood Road
Attendance: 5,678
4 January 2003
15:00
Gloucester 24 – 17 London Wasps
Kingsholm
Attendance: 11,000
4 January 2003
15:00
Leicester Tigers 23 – 18 Saracens
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,845
4 January 2003
15:00
NEC Harlequins 26 – 17 Bristol Shoguns
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 7,123
4 January 2003
15:00
Northampton Saints 10 – 22 London Irish
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 10,604

Week 15[edit]

1 February 2003
14:00
Newcastle Falcons 32 – 17 Harlequins
Kingston Park
Attendance: 6,109
1 February 2003
14:15
Bath Rugby 8 – 15 Leicester Tigers
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 8,200
2 February 2003
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 12 – 17 Leeds Tykes
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 5,032
2 February 2003
15:00
London Irish 11 – 23 Sale Sharks
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 7,565
2 February 2003
15:00
London Wasps 16 – 9 Northampton Saints
Adams Park
Attendance: 9,400
2 February 2003
15:00
Saracens 22 – 29 Gloucester
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 9,089

Week 16[edit]

7 February 2003
20:00
Leeds Tykes 12 – 17 Newcastle Falcons
Headingley
Attendance: 7,207
8 February 2003
14:00
Leicester Tigers 40 – 6 Bristol Shoguns
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,875
8 February 2003
15:00
Gloucester 29 – 16 Bath
Kingsholm
Attendance: 11,000
8 February 2003
15:00
NEC Harlequins 0 – 45 Sale Sharks
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 6,823
8 February 2003
15:00
Northampton Saints 34 – 25 Saracens
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 12,500
9 February 2003
15:00
London Wasps 35 – 11 London Irish
Adams Park
Attendance: 8,590

Week 17[edit]

1 March 2003
14:15
Bath Rugby 30 – 9 Saracens
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 7,290
1 March 2003
15:00
London Wasps 13 – 12 Newcastle Falcons
Adams Park
Attendance: 6,199
2 March 2003
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 48 – 41 Harlequins
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 5,205

Week 18[edit]

15 March 2003
14:15
Bath Rugby 10 – 27 Northampton Saints
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 8,200
15 March 2003
14:30
The Sharks 32 – 20 Leeds Tykes
Heywood Road
Attendance: 5,700
16 March 2003
14:30
London Irish 6 – 16 Harlequins
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 18,585
16 March 2003
14:30
Newcastle Falcons 24 – 22 Leicester Tigers
Kingston Park
Attendance: 9,105
16 March 2003
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 21 – 38 Gloucester
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 10,693
16 March 2003
15:00
Saracens 31 – 42 London Wasps
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 8,912

Week 19[edit]

4 April 2003
20:00
Leeds Tykes 23 – 22 Harlequins
Headingley
Attendance: 4,305
6 April 2003
15:00
London Wasps 36 – 17 Bath
Adams Park
Attendance: 8,231
6 April 2003
15:00
Saracens 12 – 14 London Irish
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 6,089
6 April 2003
16:45
Leicester Tigers 33 – 20 Sale Sharks
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,815

Week 20[edit]

10 April 2003
20:00
Bath Rugby 18 – 15 London Irish
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 8,200
12 April 2003
15:00
Gloucester 25 – 23 Newcastle Falcons
Kingsholm
Attendance: 10,404

Week 21[edit]

16 April 2003
20:00
Northampton Saints 43 – 13 Bristol Shoguns
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 8,805
18 April 2003
15:00
The Sharks 30 – 30 Gloucester
Heywood Road
Attendance: 5,800
19 April 2003
15:00
NEC Harlequins 17 – 9 Leicester Tigers
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 7,123
20 April 2003
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 19 – 34 London Wasps
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 4,866
20 April 2003
15:00
London Irish 14 – 26 Leeds Tykes
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 7,125
20 April 2003
15:00
Newcastle Falcons 22 – 20 Northampton Saints
Kingston Park
Attendance: 7,428

Week 22[edit]

26 April 2003
15:00
Gloucester 29 – 11 Harlequins
Kingsholm
Attendance: 11,000
26 April 2003
15:00
Leicester Tigers 18 – 17 Leeds Tykes
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,815
26 April 2003
16:00
Northampton Saints 27 – 17 Sale Sharks
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 9,202
29 April 2003
19:30
Saracens 17 – 16 Bristol Shoguns
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 5,090

Week 23[edit]

2 May 2003
19:45
NEC Harlequins 19 – 31 Northampton Saints
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 6,423
3 May 2003
14:00
Leicester Tigers 19 – 20 London Irish
Welford Road
Attendance: 16,815
3 May 2003
17:15
The Sharks 9 – 16 London Wasps
Heywood Road
Attendance: 5,800
4 May 2003
14:30
Leeds Tykes 30 – 23 Gloucester
Headingley
Attendance: 6,088
4 May 2003
15:00
Bristol Shoguns 30 – 20 Bath
Ashton Gate
Attendance: 20,793
4 May 2003
15:00
Newcastle Falcons 26 – 22 Saracens
Kingston Park
Attendance: 9,127

Week 24[edit]

10 May 2003
15:00
Bath Rugby 24 – 12 Newcastle Falcons
Recreation Ground
Attendance: 8,200
10 May 2003
15:00
Gloucester 31 – 13 Leicester Tigers
Kingsholm
Attendance: 11,000
10 May 2003
15:00
London Irish 41 – 21 Bristol Shoguns
Madejski Stadium
Attendance: 12,696
10 May 2003
15:00
London Wasps 21 – 25 Harlequins
Adams Park
Attendance: 8,747
10 May 2003
15:00
Northampton Saints 28 – 6 Leeds Tykes
Franklin’s Gardens
Attendance: 12,500
10 May 2003
15:00
Saracens 34 – 19 Sale Sharks
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 6,211

Play-offs[edit]

Semi final[edit]

17 May 2003
18:00
London Wasps 19 – 10 Northampton Saints
Adams Park
Attendance: 7,398

Final[edit]

31 May 2003
15:30
Gloucester 3 – 39 London Wasps
Twickenham
Attendance: 42,000

Zurich Wildcard[edit]

Meanwhile, Leeds (5th place), Leicester (6th), Harlequins (7th), Saracens (8th) played for a Zurich Wildcard to the 2003–04 Heineken Cup:

Semi-finals[edit]

First leg[edit]

14 May 2003
Harlequins 26 – 23 Leicester Tigers
Report
Twickenham Stoop
Attendance: 2,350
Referee: D Pearson
14 May 2003
Saracens 57 – 21 Leeds Tykes
Report
Vicarage Road
Attendance: 2,900
Referee: Roy Maybank

Second leg[edit]

18 May 2003
Leicester Tigers 28– 13 Harlequins
[ Report]
Welford Road
Attendance: 5,552

Leicester advanced to the wildcard final due to a superior aggregate score of 51-39

18 May 2003
Leeds Tykes 27 – 13 Saracens
Report
Headingley
Attendance: 1,407
Referee: Tony Spreadbury

Saracens advanced to the wildcard final due to a superior aggregate score of 70-48

Final[edit]

31 May 2003
Leicester Tigers 27 – 20 (a.e.t.) Saracens
[ Report]
Franklin's Gardens
Attendance: 8,066

Total Season Attendances[edit]

Club Home
Games
Total Average Highest Lowest % Capacity
Bath 11 88,520 8,047 8,200 7,290 98%
Bristol 11 77,250 7,023 20,793 4,342 51%
Gloucester 11 115,938 10,540 11,000 9,544 96%
Harlequins 12 80,632 6,719 8,311 2,350 79%
Leeds Tykes 12 54,377 4,531 7,207 1,407 20%
Leicester Tigers 12 188,136 15,678 16,875 5,552 93%
London Irish 11 109,128 9,921 18,585 7,125 41%
London Wasps 12 92,733 7,728 10,000 4,475 77%
Newcastle Falcons 11 64,358 5,851 9,127 3,273 59%
Northampton Saints 11 116,271 10,570 12,600 8,296 84%
Sale Sharks 11 59,680 5,425 5,800 4,514 95%
Saracens 12 86,883 7,240 10,531 2,900 33%

References[edit]