1999 Rugby World Cup
The 1999 Rugby World Cup was the fourth Rugby World Cup, the quadrennial international rugby union championship. It was principally hosted by Wales, was won by Australia; this was the first Rugby World Cup. Although the majority of matches were played outside Wales the opening ceremony, the first match and the final were held in Cardiff. Four automatic qualification places were available for the 1999 tournament. Qualification for the final 16 places took place between 63 other nations; the tournament was expanded to 20 teams, divided into five pools of four teams, a scenario that necessitated a quarter-final play-off round involving the five runners-up and best third-placed team to decide who would join the pool winners in the last eight. The 1999 tournament saw the introduction of a repechage a second chance for teams that had finished runners-up in each qualifying zone. Uruguay and Tonga were the first nations to profit from the repechage, took their places alongside fellow qualifiers Australia, Ireland, Italy, Fiji, Romania, Namibia, Japan and the United States.
The tournament began with the opening ceremony in the newly-built Millennium Stadium, with Wales beating Argentina 23–18, Colin Charvis scoring the first try of the tournament. Australia won the tournament, becoming the first nation to do so twice and to date the only team to win after having to qualify for the tournament, with a 35–12 triumph over France, who were unable to repeat their semi-final victory over pre-tournament favourites New Zealand; the overall attendance for the tournament was 1.75 million. The following 20 teams, shown by region, qualified for the 1999 Rugby World Cup. Of the 20 teams, only four of those places were automatically allocated and did not have to play any qualification matches; these went to the champions, runners-up and the third-placed nations at the 1995 and the tournament host, Wales. A record 65 nations from five continents were therefore involved in the qualification process designed to fill the remaining 16 spots. Wales won the right to host the World Cup in 1999.
The centrepiece venue for the tournament was the Millennium Stadium, built on the site of the old National Stadium at Cardiff Arms Park at a cost of £126 million from Lottery money and private investment. Other venues in Wales were the Racecourse Stradey Park. An agreement was reached so that the other unions in the Five Nations Championship hosted matches. Venues in England included Twickenham and Welford Road, rugby union venues, as well as Ashton Gate in Bristol and the McAlpine Stadium in Huddersfield, which host football. Scottish venues included the home of the Scottish Rugby Union. Venues in Ireland included Lansdowne Road, the traditional home of the Irish Rugby Football Union and Thomond Park. France used five venues, the most of any nation, including the French national stadium, Stade de France, which hosted the final of both the 1998 FIFA World Cup and the 2007 Rugby World Cup. With the expansion of the Rugby World Cup from 16 to 20 teams an unusual and complex format was used with the teams split into five pools of four teams with each team playing each other in their pool once.
Pool A was played in Scotland Pool B was played in England Pool C was played in France Pool D was played in the principal host nation Wales Pool E was played in Ireland with matches played in both the Republic of Ireland & Northern IrelandPoints system The points system, used in the pool stage was unchanged from both 1991 and 1995: 3 points for a win 2 points for a draw 1 point for playingThe five pool winners qualified automatically to the quarter-finals. The five pool runners-up and the best third-placed side qualified for the quarter-final play-offs. Knock-out stage The five pool runners-up and the best third-placed team from the pool stage contested the quarter-final play-offs in three one-off matches that decided the remaining three places in the quarter-finals, with the losers being eliminated; the unusual format meant. From the quarter-final stage it became a simple knockout tournament; the semi-final losers played off for third place. The draw and format for the knock-out stage was set.
Quarter-final play-offs draw Match H: Pool B runner-up v Pool C runner-up Match G: Pool A runner-up v Pool D runner-up Match F: Pool E runner-up v Best third-placed teamQuarter-finals draw Match M: Pool D winners v Pool E winners Match J: Pool A winners v Play-off H winners Match L: Pool C winners v Play-off F winners Match K: Pool B winners v Play-off G winnersSemi-finals draw Match J winners v Match M winners Match L winners v Match K winnersA total of 41 matches were played throughout the tournament over 35 days from 1 October 1999 to 6 November 1999. The tournament began on 1 October 1999 in the newly built Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, with Wales beating Argentina in a hard fought game 23–18 to get their campaign off to a positive start; the Pool stage of the tournament played out as was expected with the Tri Nations teams of New Zealand, South Africa and Austra
Rugby union positions
In the game of rugby union, there are 15 players on each team, comprising eight forwards and seven backs. In addition, there may be up to eight replacement players "on the bench", numbered 16–23. Players are not restricted to a single position, although they specialise in just one or two that suit their skills and body types. Players that play multiple positions are called "utility players"; the scrum must consist of eight players from each team: the "front row", the "second row", a "back row". The players outside the scrum are called "the backs": half back, first five, second five, two wings, a fullback. Early names, such as "three-quarters" and "outside-halves" are still used by many in the Northern Hemisphere, while in the Southern Hemisphere the fly-half and inside centre are colloquially called "first five-eighth" and "second five-eighth" while the scrum-half is known as the "half-back"; the backs play behind the forwards and are more built and faster. Successful backs are skilful at kicking.
Full-backs need to be good defenders and kickers, have the ability to catch a kicked ball. The wingers are among the fastest players in a team and score many of the tries; the centres' key attacking roles are to break through the defensive line and link with wingers. The fly-half can be a good kicker and directs the backline; the scrum-half retrieves the ball from the forwards and needs a quick and accurate pass to get the ball to the backs. Forwards compete for the ball in scrums and line-outs and are bigger and stronger than the backs. Props push in the scrums. Locks jump for the ball at the line-out after the hooker has thrown it in; the flankers and number eight should be the first forwards to a tackle and play an important role in securing possession of the ball for their team. There are a maximum of 15 players from each team on a rugby field at one time; the players' position at the start of the game are indicated by the numbers on the back of their shirts, 1 to 15. The positions are divided into two main categories.
In international matches, there are eight substitutes. The substitutes, numbered 16 to 23, can either take up the position of the player they replace or the on-field players can be shuffled to make room for this player in another position; the replacement players will have a number that corresponds with their intended replacement position with the numbers from 16 to 20 being forwards and 21 to 23 being backs. There are no personal squad numbers and a versatile player's position and number may change from one game to the next. Players can change positions with players on the field during the match, and, as long as the laws are followed, any player can change positions with another player during the match. Common examples are the fly-half playing the full-back's position in defence or a prop taking the hooker's position at line-outs. Different positions on the field suit certain skill sets and body types leading to players specialising in a limited number of positions; each position has certain roles to play on the field, although most have been established through convention rather than law.
During general play, as long as they are not offside, the players may be positioned anywhere on the field. It is during the set pieces and line-out, when the positions are enforced. During early rugby union games there were only two positions; the attacking possibilities of playing close behind the scrimmage were recognised. The players who stationed themselves between the forwards and tends became known as "half-tends", it was observed that the players outside scrimmage were not limited to a defensive role, so the tends and half-tends were renamed "backs" and "half-backs". As the game became more sophisticated, the backs positioned at different depths behind the forwards, they were further differentiated into half-backs, three-quarter-backs, full-back. Specialised roles for the scrum evolved with "wing-forward" being employed to protect the half-back; the first international between England and Scotland was played in 1871 and consisted of twenty players on each side: thirteen forwards, three half-backs, one three-quarter and three full-backs.
The player numbers were reduced to fifteen in 1877. Numbers were added to the backs of players' jerseys in the 1920s as a way for coaches and selectors to rate individual players; the various positions have changed names over time and many are known by different names in different countries. Players in the flanker positions were known as "wing forwards", while in the backs, "centre three-quarter" and "wing three-quarter" were used to describe the outside centre and wing The names used by World Rugby tend to reflect Northern Hemisphere usage although fly-half is still known as "outside-half" or "stand-off" in Britain, "outhalf" in Ireland. In New Zealand, the scrum-half is still referred to as the "half-back", the fly-half is referred to as the "first five-eighth", the inside centre is called the "second five-eighth" and t
New Zealand is a sovereign island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. The country geographically comprises two main landmasses—the North Island, the South Island —and around 600 smaller islands. New Zealand is situated some 2,000 kilometres east of Australia across the Tasman Sea and 1,000 kilometres south of the Pacific island areas of New Caledonia and Tonga; because of its remoteness, it was one of the last lands to be settled by humans. During its long period of isolation, New Zealand developed a distinct biodiversity of animal and plant life; the country's varied topography and its sharp mountain peaks, such as the Southern Alps, owe much to the tectonic uplift of land and volcanic eruptions. New Zealand's capital city is Wellington. Sometime between 1250 and 1300, Polynesians settled in the islands that were named New Zealand and developed a distinctive Māori culture. In 1642, Dutch explorer Abel Tasman became the first European to sight New Zealand. In 1840, representatives of the United Kingdom and Māori chiefs signed the Treaty of Waitangi, which declared British sovereignty over the islands.
In 1841, New Zealand became a colony within the British Empire and in 1907 it became a dominion. Today, the majority of New Zealand's population of 4.9 million is of European descent. Reflecting this, New Zealand's culture is derived from Māori and early British settlers, with recent broadening arising from increased immigration; the official languages are English, Māori, NZ Sign Language, with English being dominant. A developed country, New Zealand ranks in international comparisons of national performance, such as quality of life, education, protection of civil liberties, economic freedom. New Zealand underwent major economic changes during the 1980s, which transformed it from a protectionist to a liberalised free-trade economy; the service sector dominates the national economy, followed by the industrial sector, agriculture. Nationally, legislative authority is vested in an elected, unicameral Parliament, while executive political power is exercised by the Cabinet, led by the prime minister Jacinda Ardern.
Queen Elizabeth II is the country's monarch and is represented by a governor-general Dame Patsy Reddy. In addition, New Zealand is organised into 11 regional councils and 67 territorial authorities for local government purposes; the Realm of New Zealand includes Tokelau. New Zealand is a member of the United Nations, Commonwealth of Nations, ANZUS, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, ASEAN Plus Six, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, the Pacific Community and the Pacific Islands Forum. Dutch explorer Abel Tasman sighted New Zealand in 1642 and named it Staten Land "in honour of the States General", he wrote, "it is possible that this land joins to the Staten Land but it is uncertain", referring to a landmass of the same name at the southern tip of South America, discovered by Jacob Le Maire in 1616. In 1645, Dutch cartographers renamed the land Nova Zeelandia after the Dutch province of Zeeland. British explorer James Cook subsequently anglicised the name to New Zealand. Aotearoa is the current Māori name for New Zealand.
It is unknown whether Māori had a name for the whole country before the arrival of Europeans, with Aotearoa referring to just the North Island. Māori had several traditional names for the two main islands, including Te Ika-a-Māui for the North Island and Te Waipounamu or Te Waka o Aoraki for the South Island. Early European maps labelled the islands North and South. In 1830, maps began to use North and South to distinguish the two largest islands and by 1907 this was the accepted norm; the New Zealand Geographic Board discovered in 2009 that the names of the North Island and South Island had never been formalised, names and alternative names were formalised in 2013. This set the names as North Island or Te Ika-a-Māui, South Island or Te Waipounamu. For each island, either its English or Māori name can be used. New Zealand was one of the last major landmasses settled by humans. Radiocarbon dating, evidence of deforestation and mitochondrial DNA variability within Māori populations suggest New Zealand was first settled by Eastern Polynesians between 1250 and 1300, concluding a long series of voyages through the southern Pacific islands.
Over the centuries that followed, these settlers developed a distinct culture now known as Māori. The population was divided into iwi and hapū who would sometimes cooperate, sometimes compete and sometimes fight against each other. At some point a group of Māori migrated to Rēkohu, now known as the Chatham Islands, where they developed their distinct Moriori culture; the Moriori population was all but wiped out between 1835 and 1862 because of Taranaki Māori invasion and enslavement in the 1830s, although European diseases contributed. In 1862 only 101 survived, the last known full-blooded Moriori died in 1933; the first Europeans known to have reached New Zeala
Christopher Douglas Paterson, MBE is an ambassador and specialist coach for the Scotland and Edinburgh rugby union teams. He is a former professional rugby union player who played for Scotland and, for the most part of his career, Edinburgh. Paterson is Scotland's record points scorer with 809 points and second most-capped player with 109 caps, he is capable of playing in a range of positions, including fullback and fly-half. Paterson retired from international rugby in December 2011 and as a professional player in May 2012. Paterson started his rugby career with hometown club Gala, the highlight being a solo try that won Gala the 1999 Scottish Cup at Murrayfield. Soon after Paterson turned professional by signing for Glasgow where he played only two games before signing for Edinburgh Rugby. In becoming a professional player he dropped out from Edinburgh University where he was studying to become a PE teacher. From 2000 until 2002 Paterson played in the Scottish/Welsh League, the predecessor to the competition now known as Pro14.
He was part of the Edinburgh squad that reached the Heineken Cup quarter finals in 2003–04. For seven years he was a mainstay of the Edinburgh squad. With the ongoing dispute between the SRU and Edinburgh Rugby owner Bob Carruthers over the refusal to release Edinburgh players for a pre-2007 World Cup training camp, Paterson left Edinburgh for Gloucester by mutual consent. On 24 July 2007, Paterson signed a three-year contract with Gloucester, his spell with Gloucester was disappointing due to limited game time throughout the 2007–08 season. It was announced on 2 May 2008 that Paterson would return to Edinburgh Rugby for the 2008–09 season He played 14 games during his stay scoring 38 points, the highlight being a 50-metre breakaway try in the derby game against Bath Paterson re-signed for Edinburgh Rugby upon leaving Gloucester and has remained a fixture in the line up since. One of Paterson’s top skills – his goal-kicking – was typified in Edinburgh Rugby's last home game of the 2008–09 Celtic League season which saw a 43–3 home win against Newport Gwent Dragons on 9 May 2009.
Paterson scored 28 points, kicking nine from nine with four conversions and a try. As of 4 April 2012, Paterson is the 5th highest points scorer in Pro12 history with 778 points, he played his last professional match against Benetton Treviso on 5 May 2012 at Murrayfield Stadium. Despite an unusually long absence from the score sheet owing to injury, Paterson scored Edinburgh Rugby's third try of the match leading to a 44–21 victory. Paterson earned his first cap for Scotland against Spain in the 1999 Rugby World Cup as a fullback; this was his only appearance during the 1999 World Cup. Scotland went on to reach the quarter finals before losing 30–18 to New Zealand. In his next appearance during the 2000 Six Nations Championship game versus France, Paterson scored his first points for Scotland converting two penalties and a conversion in the 16–28 loss; that year Paterson scored his first Scotland try during the 2000 tour of New Zealand during the 48–14 loss at Eden Park, Auckland. During the subsequent years Paterson became a fixture in the Scotland team.
His consistent performance for club and country earned him a place in Scotland’s 2003 Rugby World Cup squad. During Scotland’s opening 2003 Rugby World Cup game Paterson scored two tries and kicked a conversion and a penalty during a 32–11 win against Japan. In the next game against the United States Paterson scored 19 points, including a try, during a 39–15 win. Paterson played in the subsequent win and loss against Fiji and France to help Scotland qualify for the quarter final stage. In the 2003 Rugby World cup quarter-finals, Scotland lost 33 -- 16 to Australia at Brisbane. Paterson scored 71 points during the 2003 Rugby World Cup and was named the team's player of the tournament. On 15 November 2004 during Scotland's record 100–8 win over Japan game at McDiarmid Park, Perth he overtook Andy Irvine to become Scotland's second highest points scorer, behind Gavin Hastings, he scored 40 points. This remains a record points haul for a Scottish player in a test match. Two weeks on 27 November 2004 against South Africa he became the youngest, lightest, Scottish player to earn 50 caps, aged 26, weighing in at 78 kg.
On 26 February 2005, Paterson equalled the scoring record set by Gavin Hastings for one game of six penalties converted in the 18–13 win over Italy. Paterson was the BBC's full-back of the 2005 Six Nations Championship; as a result of his reliable kicking and elusive running from full-back during the 2005 Six Nations Championship in the Calcutta Cup game, Paterson's omission from Clive Woodward's squad for the 2005 British and Irish Lions tour to New Zealand surprised many critics and fans alike. This was to fuelled criticism that Woodward had placed too much reliance upon his England team who won the 2003 Rugby World Cup. Woodward’s 2005 Lions were unsuccessful losing the test series 3–0. Paterson played as part of a resurgent Scotland team of the 2006 Six Nations Championship who recorded wins over France and Italy to finish third in the table; this remains Scotland’s best finish since the 5 Nations became the 6 Nations with the addition of Italy in 2000. Paterson was captain during the 2007 Six Nations Championship.
Paterson was picked in Scotland’s 2007 Rugby World Cup squad. This his third World Cup campaign. With the previous two in 1999 & 2003 Scotland exited in the quarter final stage losing 19–13 to Argentina at the Stade de France, Saint-Denis. Paterson played in all five of Scotland’s games scoring 46 poi
Anthony Charles'Budge' Pountney is a rugby union coach and retired player. A flanker, he played in the Northampton Saints side. Pountney was born in Southampton in England, but had a grandmother from the Channel Islands which made him eligible for any of the British national teams, he won 31 caps for Scotland from 1998 to 2002. He was part of the Scotland team that won the 1999 Five Nations Championship, played in the 1999 World Cup, captained the team. After retiring, he was head coach and director of rugby at Northampton, he has since worked in school coaching. Pountney was born in the son of a farm manager, he attended Kings' Peter Symonds College in Winchester. He gained a BA Honours in European Studies and Sports Studies, he was eligible to play rugby for Scotland by virtue of a grandmother born in the Channel Islands. He began playing rugby for the Winchester RFC mini rugby sides. At age 18 he joined Northampton Rugby Union Football Club who were playing in what was the First Division, his senior debut came in 1994, against Coventry R.
F. C.. He had played for the England Students and U21s but had never felt like he fitted in, he started in the Northampton side that won the 2000 Heineken Cup Final, defeating Munster at Twickenham. He was club captain from 2001 to 2004, he had broken his nose twice that season, but with the Northampton squad stretched, he had continued to offer himself for selection. In September 2003 he sustained a broken ankle while playing a pre-season friendly match for Northampton, he did not recover sufficiently from that injury and in February 2004 he announced his retirement from playing rugby. He made 215 appearances for Northampton and scored 46 tries, playing in 104 English Premiership matches. Pountney represented England Students and Under-21s, but was told that he was too short to play for Eng, he qualified for Scotland through a grandmother from the Channel Islands. He received his first cap for Scotland in November 1998, in an autumn international test match against South Africa, he had played a part in all the team's matches when Scotland won the 1999 Five Nations Championship, where he was a replacement in the first three matches before Jim Telfer selected him in the starting line-up for the match against France in Paris.
He was part of the Scotland squad for the 1999 Rugby World Cup, playing in four matches. He scored a try against New Zealand in the quarter-finals, although the All Blacks won the match and brought Scotland's tournament came to an end. In January 2002, returning from injury, he captained Scotland against England in their opening match of the 2002 Six Nations Championship, he made a total of 31 capped appearances for Scotland. In January 2003 he left Murrayfield in frustration for the last time, after speaking his mind plainly on the problems he saw there. Late in 2004 he became head coach of Northampton Saints, together with former England fly-half and teammate Paul Grayson. In July 2005 he became Director of Rugby. After retiring from top class rugby, he has worked as an independent citing officer, reviewing English Rugby Premiership matches. In the summer of 2013 he became Director of Rugby at Bournemouth RFC who were playing in National Division 2 South; the club announced that he was to leave at the end of the 2014 season, citing a change in personal circumstances.
He worked as Head of Rugby at Marlborough College and moved to Regent House School in Newtownards in 2017
2003 Rugby World Cup
The 2003 Rugby World Cup was the fifth Rugby World Cup and was won by England. Planned to be co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand, all games were shifted to Australia following a contractual dispute over ground signage rights between the New Zealand Rugby Union and Rugby World Cup Limited; the pre-event favourites were England, regarded by many at the time as the best team in the world. New Zealand, South Africa and defending champions Australia were expected to make strong showings, with New Zealand being second favourites after victory in the southern-hemisphere Tri-Nations championship; the tournament began with host nation Australia defeating Argentina 24–8 at Telstra Stadium in Sydney. Australia went on to play England in the final. Along with a try to Jason Robinson, Jonny Wilkinson kicked four penalties and a drop-goal in extra time to win the game 20–17 for England, who became the first northern hemisphere team to win the Webb Ellis Cup; the following 20 teams, shown by region, qualified for the 2003 Rugby World Cup.
Of the 20 teams, eight of those places were automatically filled by the teams that reached the quarter-final stages in 1999, including hosts and world champions Australia and did not have to play any qualification matches. A record 81 nations from five continents were involved in the qualification process designed to fill the remaining 12 spots, which began on 23 September 2000. Australia won the right to host the 2003 World Cup without the involvement of New Zealand after a contractual dispute over ground signage rights between the New Zealand Rugby Football Union and Rugby World Cup Limited. Australia and New Zealand had been expected to co-host — with New Zealand expected to host 23 of the 48 matches — but New Zealand's insistence on amending the provisions relating to stadium advertising was unacceptable to the IRB; the overall stadium capacity was 421,311 across 11 venues. This was a reduction from the 1999 Rugby World Cup in Wales which had a total capacity of 654,677 across 18 venues.
The Adelaide Oval underwent a AU$20 million redevelopment for the 2003 Rugby World Cup, financed by the South Australian Cricket Association, with two new grandstands built adjacent to the Victor Richardson Gates. Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane was a new A$280 million venue designed for rugby league, rugby union and soccer, was opened just prior to the start of the 2003 World Cup with a capacity of 52,500, some 12,000 more than the old Lang Park could hold; the Central Coast Stadium was a newly built rectangular venue built for union and soccer. It was built on the site of the old Grahame Park ground and was opened in February 2000 at a cost of A$30 million; the Sydney Football Stadium was one of two venues in Sydney that were used for football during the 2000 Olympic Games. The other venue in Sydney was Stadium Australia, the centrepiece of the 2000 Olympic Games. By 2003 Stadium Australia was known as Telstra Stadium, it was built as the main stadium of the 2000 Olympics at a cost of $690 million and with a capacity of 83,500 was the biggest stadium used in the 2003 World Cup.
The only stadium with a retractable roof used was the Docklands Stadium in Melbourne. Although the Docklands Stadium has movable seating which brings four sections of the lower bowl forward by 18 metres to create a more rectangular surround for the pitch, this was not used during the World Cup as it reduces the seating capacity of the stadium by 3,500. Touch judges and television match officials Source: Following the complex format used in the 1999 Rugby World Cup a new simpler format was introduced and the twenty teams were divided into four pools of five nations, with the top two in each pool moving on to the knock-out quarter-final stage. With forty matches to be played in the pool stage on top of the knock-out matches would make the event the largest Rugby World Cup tournament to be played to date. For the first time, a bonus point system was implemented in pool play; this system is identical to that long used in Southern Hemisphere tournaments, was soon adopted in most European competitions: 4 points for a win 2 points for a draw 0 points for a loss 1 bonus point for scoring 4 or more tries, or a loss by 7 points or fewerA total of 48 matches were played throughout the tournament over 42 days from 10 October to 22 November 2003.
The ARU's main promotion for the event was "Show Your True Colours". The Australian media criticised the competition early in the tournament as the smaller nations were crushed by the rugby superpowers by 60 points or more. However, some of these smaller, third tier nations, such as Japan, acquitted themselves well in their opening matches; the South Pacific island countries of Fiji and Samoa were reported as being handicapped as several of their key players who play abroad being warned by their clubs that their contracts would not be renewed if they played in the competition. In the event, the pool stage of the competition played out as expected, with some tension as to whether some of the "developing" nations would overtake some of the weaker major countries for the second quarter-final qualification place in each pool – in pool A, Argentina lost to Ireland by only one point, which would otherwise have carried them into the quarter-finals in Ireland's place. In pool C, Samoa gave England a fr
Scotland national rugby union team
The Scotland national rugby union team is administered by the Scottish Rugby Union. The team takes part in the annual Six Nations Championship and participates in the Rugby World Cup, which takes place every four years; as of 18 March 2019, Scotland are 7th in the World Rugby Rankings. The Scottish rugby team dates back to 1871, where they beat England in the first international rugby union match at Raeburn Place. Scotland competed in the Five Nations from the inaugural tournament in 1883, winning it 14 times outright—including the last Five Nations in 1999—and sharing it another 8. In 2000 the competition accepted a sixth competitor, thus forming the Six Nations. Since this change, Scotland have yet to win the competition; the Rugby World Cup was introduced in 1987 and Scotland have competed in all eight competitions, the most recent being in 2015 where they were knocked out by Australia at the quarter-final stage in controversial circumstances. Their best finish came in 1991. Scotland have a strong rivalry with the English national team.
They both annually compete for the Calcutta Cup. Each year, this fixture is played out as part of the Six Nations, with Scotland having last won in 2018. In December 1870 a group of Scots players issued a letter of challenge in The Scotsman and in Bell's Life in London, to play an England XX at rugby rules; the English could hardly ignore such a challenge and this led to the first-ever rugby international match being played at Academical Cricket Club's ground at Raeburn Place, Edinburgh, on Monday 27 March 1871. In front of around 4000 spectators, the Scots won the encounter by a try and a goal to a solitary try scored by England. England got revenge by winning the return match at the Kennington Oval, London in the following year; the Calcutta Cup was donated to the Rugby Football Union in 1878 by the members of the short-lived Calcutta Rugby Club. The members had decided to disband: the cup was crafted from melted-down silver rupees which became available when the Club's funds were withdrawn from the bank.
The Cup is unique in that it is competed for annually only by Scotland. The first Calcutta Cup match was played in 1879 and, since that time, over 100 matches have taken place. In 1882 the Home Nations Championship, the fore-runner of the modern Six Nations Championship was founded with Scotland, England and Ireland taking part; the Scots enjoyed occasional success in the early years, winning their first Triple Crown in 1891 and repeating the feat again in 1895, vying with Wales for dominance in the first decade of the 20th century. Further Triple Crowns wins for Scotland followed in 1901, 1903 and 1907. However, Scotland's triumph in 1907 would be the last for eighteen years as the First World War and England's dominance afterwards would deny them glory. In 1897 land was purchased, at Inverleith, Edinburgh, thus the SFU became the first of the Home Unions to own its own ground. The first visitors were Ireland, on 18 February 1899. International rugby was played at Inverleith until 1925; the SFU bought some land and built the first Murrayfield Stadium, opened on 21 March 1925.
In 1925 Scotland had victories over France at Inverleith, Wales in Swansea and Ireland in Dublin. England, the Grand Slam champions of the two previous seasons were the first visitors to Murrayfield. 70,000 spectators saw the lead change hands three times before Scotland secured a 14–11 victory which gave them their first-ever Five Nations Grand Slam. In 1926, Scotland became the first Home nation side to defeat England at Twickenham after England had won the Grand Slam five times in eight seasons; the outbreak of the Second World War in September 1939 brought rugby union in Scotland to a halt. The SRU cancelled all arranged trial and international matches and encouraged the member clubs to carry on as best they could; some clubs closed down, others amalgamated and carried on playing other local clubs and, teams from the armed forces stationed in their various areas. Internationals resumed in the 1946–47 season, although these were not formally recognised and no caps were awarded to participating players.
In January 1946, Scotland played and defeated a strong New Zealand Armed Forces team by 11–6. Scotland resumed full international matches in February 1947; the period after World War Two was not a successful one for Scotland. In 1951, the touring Springboks massacred Scotland 44–0 scoring nine tries, a record defeat. Scotland suffered 17 successive defeats between February 1951 and February 1955, scored only 54 points in these 17 games: 11 tries, six conversions, four penalties; the teams from 1955–63 were an improvement. There were no wins over England. Occasional wins were recorded against Wales and France. 1964 was a good year for Scotland. New Zealand were held to a 0 -- the last international match in which no points were scored; the Calcutta Cup was won 15–6, the first time since 1950 and they shared the Five Nations title in 1964 with Wales. In 1971 the SRU appointed Bill Dickinson as their head coach, after years of avoidance, as it was their belief that rugby should remain an amateur sport.
He was designated as an "adviser to the captain". Scotland were the first of the Home Unions to run a nationwide club league; this was introduced in 1973 and still flourishes today with several of the country's original clubs still much in evidence, such as Heriots, West of Scotland and the famous'border' clubs su