5 Facts about the rugby world cup

Rugby world cup 2019

Rugby fans from all the over the globe eagerly await the 2019 rugby world cup which will be hosted by Japan.  With New Zealand, the reigning world champs (this is their third world cup title) already getting into top shape eager to defend their title against the other nineteen competing teams.

5 Facts about the rugby world cup

#1 Top winning teams:

  • New Zealand, current title holders and have won the titles three times in the years 1987, 2011 and 2015
  • South Africa has won the world cup twice in the years 1995 and 2007
  • Australia has won the world cup twice in the years 1991 and 1999

#2 South Africa and New Zealand are the only nations to have won home world cup games.  These were South Africa who hosted the world cup in 1995 and won.  New Zealand in 1987 and again 2011.

#3 England is the only team from the Northern hemisphere to have won the world cup title in the year 2003.  Other teams include France, Wales, Scotland and Ireland to name a few.

#4 New Zealand scored the highest ever points against Japan in 1995.  New Zealand scored twenty-one tries in that match with a score of 145

#5 The rugby world cup was played for the first time in 1987 when the USA was the reigning champions as they had won the gold medal in the 1924 summer Olympics ruby tournament.

When the first rugby world cup was held in 1987 all teams who were members of the IRFB were included which left any remaining open posts to be filled by invasion from the rugby unions.

The cup that is awarded to the winners of the rugby world cup is called the “William Webb Ellis Cup”.  Named after the  Reverend William Webb Ellis who is believed to be the inventor of the rugby game.  Whilst still at school (Rugby School) and during a game of football he picked the ball up and ran with it, hence the rugby style of playing the game.  This story is disputed by rugby historian as a myth.


The woman’s rugby world cup was held in August 2017 and hosted by Iceland.  The winner was five times champions New Zealand, with runner-up England (they have been four times runners-up) and France in third place.  The next woman’s rugby world cup will be in 2021.

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