Yorkshire Carnegie will take on Ealing Trailfinders, Bedford Blues and Dragons Premiership Select in the 2016-17 British and Irish Cup.

Title holders London Welsh, who defeated Carnegie in the final to secure the title, will kick-off the new season campaign against 2012 winners Munster ‘A’ when the competition returns in October.

The Exiles claimed their first B&I trophy after an impressive performance against Yorkshire Carnegie in April. Tries from Kieran Murphy, Nathan Trevett and three from James Lewis helped Welsh secure their third trophy in four years, including two Championship and one B& I Cup. They will now begin their title defence with a trip to the Emerald Isle to face Munster ‘A’, who finished third in pool three last season.  

Meanwhile Championship newcomers London Irish play Ospreys Premiership Select who, alongside Cardiff Blues, Scarlets and Dragons, make up the Welsh Regional Premiership teams participating in the cross-border competition.

Richmond, who were promoted to the Championship from National League 1 last season, will begin their inaugural cross border campaign against Leinster ‘A’. The Dublin club have won the British & Irish Cup twice since its inception in 2009, claiming the title over Newcastle Falcons in 20013 and Yorkshire Carnegie in 2014.

In one of only two all-English ties in the opening round, Doncaster Knights will host local rivals Rotherham Titans. Fixtures between the two South Yorkshire teams always prove to be a tight affair, with results between them being decided by an average of five points over the past two league seasons.

British & Irish Cup 2016/17 pools and fixtures

Pool 1
Jersey Reds
London Scottish
Ulster ‘A’
Cardiff Blues Premiership Select

Pool 2
London Welsh
Doncaster Knights
Munster ‘A’
Rotherham Titans

Pool 3
Cornish Pirates
London Irish
Ospreys Premiership Select
Connacht Eagles

Pool 4
Leinster ‘A’
Scarlets Premiership Select
Nottingham Rugby
Richmond

Pool 5
Yorkshire Carnegie
Bedford Blues
Dragons Premiership Select
Ealing Trailfinders

Fixtures
Round 1 – October 14/15/16
Pool 1: Ulster ‘A’ v Jersey Reds
Pool 1: Cardiff Blues Premiership Select v London Scottish
Pool 2: Rotherham Titans v Doncaster Knights
Pool 2: Munster ‘A’ v London Welsh
Pool 3: Connacht Eagles v Cornish Pirates
Pool 3: Ospreys Premiership Select v London Irish
Pool 4: Nottingham Rugby v Scarlets Premiership Select
Pool 4: Richmond v Leinster ‘A’
Pool 5: Bedford Blues v Dragons Premiership Select
Pool 5: Ealing Trailfinders v Yorkshire Carnegie

Round 2 – October 21/22/23
Pool 1: Jersey Reds v Cardiff Blues Premiership Select
Pool 1: London Scottish v Ulster ‘A’
Pool 2: Doncaster Knights v Munster ‘A’
Pool 2: London Welsh v Rotherham Titans
Pool 3: Cornish Pirates v Ospreys Premiership Select
Pool 3: London Irish v Connacht Eagles
Pool 4: Scarlets Premiership Select v Richmond
Pool 4: Leinster ‘A’ v Nottingham Rugby
Pool 5: Dragons Premiership Select v Ealing Trailfinders
Pool 5: Yorkshire Carnegie v Bedford Blues

Round 3 – December 9/10/11
Pool 1: London Scottish v Jersey Reds
Pool 1: Ulster ‘A’ v Cardiff Blues Premiership Select
Pool 2: London Welsh v Doncaster Knights
Pool 2: Rotherham Titans v Munster ‘A’
Pool 3: London Irish v Cornish Pirates
Pool 3: Connacht Eagles v Ospreys Premiership Select
Pool 4: Nottingham Rugby v Richmond
Pool 4: Leinster ‘A’ v Scarlets Premiership Select
Pool 5: Yorkshire Carnegie v Dragons Premiership Select
Pool 5: Bedford Blues v Ealing Trailfinders

Round 4 – December 16/17/18
Pool 1: Jersey Reds v London Scottish
Pool 1: Cardiff Blues Premiership Select vUlster 'A'
Pool 2: Doncaster Knights v London Welsh
Pool 2: Munster A v Rotherham Titans
Pool 3: Cornish Pirates v London Irish
Pool 3: Ospreys Premiership Select v Connacht Eagles
Pool 4: Scarlets Premiership Select v Leinster 'A'
Pool 4: Richmond v Nottingham Rugby
Pool 5: Dragons Premiership Select v Yorkshire Carnegie
Pool 5: Ealing Trailfinders v Bedford Blues
 
Round 5 – January 13/14/15
Pool 1: Ulster 'A' v London Scottish
Pool 1: Cardiff Blues Premiership Select v Jersey Reds
Pool 2: Rotherham Titans v London Welsh
Pool 2: Munster A v Doncaster Knights
Pool 3: Connacht Eagles v London Irish
Pool 3: Ospreys Premiership Select v Cornish Pirates
Pool 4: Nottingham Rugby v Leinster 'A'
Pool 4: Richmond v Scarlets Premiership Select
Pool 5: Bedford Blues v Yorkshire Carnegie
Pool 5: Ealing Trailfinders v Dragons Premiership Select
 
Round 6 – January 20/21/22
Pool 1: Jersey Reds v Ulster 'A'
Pool 1: London Scottish v Cardiff Blues Premiership Select
Pool 2: Doncaster Knights v Rotherham Titans
Pool 2: London Welsh v Munster A
Pool 3: Cornish Pirates v Connacht Eagles
Pool 3: London Irish v Ospreys Premiership Select
Pool 4: Scarlets Premiership Select v Nottingham Rugby
Pool 4: Leinster 'A' v Richmond
Pool 5: Dragons Premiership Select v Bedford Blues
Pool 5: Yorkshire Carnegie v Ealing Trailfinders

Quarter-finals: March 10/11/12
Semi-finals: March 31/April 1/April 2
Final: April 22