While the Vodacom Bulls demolished Lyon to claim their quarter-final spot this past weekend, two other Vodacom URC clubs were desperately unlucky as Glasgow Warriors and the DHL Stormers both narrowly lost their playoff games in results that could easily have gone the other way.

The Vodacom Bulls were joined by Irish powerhouse Leinster in the Investec Champions’ Cup quarter-finals as both look ahead to tough fixtures to move into the last four of the tournament.

The men from Pretoria travel to Northampton Saints this weekend to take on the English Premiership log leaders, while Leinster host defending champions Stade Rochelais in a repeat of last season’s final, after the French side squeaked past the DHL Stormers in an epic game on Saturday.

In the EPCR Challenge Cup, Vodacom URC clubs really flexed their muscles, providing six out of the eight quarter-finalists for the tournament.

The big clash of the draw is likely to be Hollywoodbets Sharks hosting Edinburgh in their quarter-final in Durban, with Scottish international Pierre Schoeman returning from injury for the clash.

It also sets up a tough return match after the KwaZulu-Natalians beat Edinburgh two weeks ago but the prospect of a knockout game, coupled with the return knowledge that former Sharks coach Shaun Everitt has under his belt makes it more difficult.

Bongi Mbonambi.

Bongi Mbonambi.

Even Springbok hooker Bongi Mbonambi acknowledged this ahead of the game this week.

"The fact that it’s a quarter-final and a whole different competition makes it even more difficult," said Mbonambi.

"We know they’ll come here even better prepared than before. We noticed last time that they were missing a couple of their key players, and had just come back from playing Six Nations.

"They’ll definitely be fresh and more challenging this time around. Especially with a coach like Sean Everitt, he knows how to prepare a team and bring them down here to Durban. They’re definitely going to come back stronger.”

The other all-Vodacom URC clash is Italian side Benetton - who defeated the Emirates Lions despite being down to 13 men at one stage - hosting Irish side Connacht in a game that is likely too close to call.

Connacht’s up and down season may have hampered their Vodacom URC log position, but few in Italy will deny that they are a tough side to face in a knockout game.

Ospreys travel to Gloucester and Ulster head to Clermont Auvergne in their quarter-final clashes as underdogs, but with enough firepower to cause an upset, and while the EPCR Challenge Cup is assured of two Vodacom URC semi-finalists, the Ospreys and Ulster fans will be more than hoping they make the top-four round an all Vodacom URC affair.

Investec Champions Cup quarter-finals

Saturday, 13 April
16h00: Bordeaux-Begles vs Harlequins
18h30: Leinster vs Stade Rochelais
21h00: Northampton Saints vs Vodacom Bulls

Sunday, 14 April
16h00: Stade Toulousain vs Exeter Chiefs

EPCR Challenge Cup quarter-finals

Friday, 12 April
21h00: Gloucester vs Ospreys

Saturday, 13 April
13h30: Clermont Auvergne vs Ulster
13h30: Hollywoodbets Sharks vs Edinburgh

Sunday, 14 April
13h0: Benetton vs Connacht