South Canterbury Rugby Football Union
The South Canterbury Rugby Football Union is a rugby province based in the central South Island city of Timaru, New Zealand. The South Canterbury team play from Alpine Energy Stadium located in Timaru. Club rugby in South Canterbury predated the formation of South Canterbury RFU by at least two decades; the first recorded club rugby match in South Canterbury was played on 15 October 1867 between The Timaru and Temuka Clubs at Arowhenua. Eight years in 1875, the South Canterbury Football Club was formed, founded by Alfred St. George Hamersley the former captain of the England national rugby union team and resident of Timaru. Soon after on 24 May 1875 a match was played between North and South Canterbury at Ashburton that resulted in a draw. More clubs were formed, such as the Waimate Football Club on 24 May 1876, Christchurch are recorded as playing Temuka in 1876. On 26 July 1879, a meeting was held in Timaru at the instigation again of Hamersley, at which delegates representing the clubs Christchurch, Christ's College, North Canterbury, South Canterbury and Southbridge agreed to form the Canterbury Rugby Football Union.
The South Canterbury Rugby Football Union was formed in 1888 when it broke away from the Canterbury Rugby Football Union. A meeting of delegates from football clubs in South Canterbury was held at the office of "Messrs Hamersley and Wood, Timaru, to consider the advisability of forming a Rugby Football Union in the district." Once again, Hamersley was involved in a pivotal point in the history of rugby in the region and his role was commemorated in 2010 with the introduction of the Hamersley trophy, a 186 cm tall silver trophy, for the winners of the senior rugby competition. This meeting was attended by delegates from the South Canterbury, Temuka, Geraldine and Fairlie Creek clubs and as a result of the union the South Canterbury club agreed to change its name to the Timaru Club. Formal association with the Canterbury RFU was broken and it was established that the boundaries of the South Canterbury union were to be the Rangitata and Waitaki rivers, the headquarters was Timaru. Soon after, a representative match was played on 24 July 1888 against the New Zealand Native Team on the Athletic Grounds, Timaru.
South Canterbury has produced a number of All Blacks and are one of the few unions to have played in all three Divisions of the NPC. South Canterbury has had some notable victories over touring international sides including the 1961 French team. In 2011 the South Canterbury Heartland Team played the 2011 Russian World Cup Team who toured New Zealand on a Pre 2011 Rugby World Cup tour at Alpine Energy Stadium. 2011 saw two sell out Super 15 games played at Alpine Energy Stadium in Timaru - the Crusaders vs the Bulls and Crusaders vs The Blues. The South Canterbury Rugby team play from Alpine Energy Stadium and they play their rugby in the Heartland Championship, they compete against Mid Canterbury and North Otago for the Hanan Shield. South Canterbury along with Canterbury, Buller, Mid Canterbury and West Coast make up the Crusaders Super Rugby franchise. South Canterbury won the 2nd division South Island in 1976, 1977, 1981 and the 3rd division in 1986, 1991, 1998, in 2001, and the Lochore Cup in 2013.
Sevens South Canterbury hosted the 2010 and 2011 South Island Sevens Tournament at Alpine Energy Stadium in Timaru, A Provincial qualifier to the New Zealand National Rugby Sevens Tournament in Queenstown South Canterbury has qualified and competed at a number of New Zealand National Rugby Sevens Tournament the last been in 2011 South Canterbury has held the Ranfurly Shield twice, in 1950 and 1974. Matches played: Sth Canterbury 17 vs Wairarapa 14, North Auckland 20 vs Sth Canterbury 9, Timaru,Team members: Coach: Brushy Mitchell Captain: Morrie Goddard Vice Captain: Lachie Grant Matches played: Sth Canterbury 18 vs Marlborough 6, Blenheim on 17th August Sth Canterbury 9 vs North Otago 3, Timaru on 31st August Wellington 9 vs Sth Canterbury 3, Timaru on 3rd SeptemberTeam members: Captain: Ken Milne The Hanan Shield is one of the most prestigious trophies in New Zealand's domestic rugby union competition. First played for in 1946, the Hanan Shield is based on a challenge system played between North Otago, South Canterbury and Mid Canterbury.
South Canterbury are the current holders of the Shield after beating Mid Canterbury 17-15 on 13 October 2012. South Canterbury Rugby Football Union is made up of nine clubs: Timaru Celtic RFC Geraldine RFC Harlequins RFC Mackenzie RFC Old Boys RFC Pareora RFC Pleasant Point RFC Temuka RFC Waimate RFCHigh School Teams Timaru Boys' High School and Roncalli College 1st XV play in the Crusaders Region Secondary Schools' Rugby Championship "The Press Cup" There have been 22 players selected for the All Blacks whilst playing their club rugby in South Canterbury. Name, All Black No. & Year: John H. Gardner, No.25, 1893 Charles N. MacIntosh, No.39, 1893 David Stewart, No.54, 1894 Alfred Budd, No.160, 1910 Thomas W. Lynch, No.177, 1913 Augustine P. Spillane, No.200, 1913 Eric Cockroft, No.203, 1913 Percival W. Storey, No.224, 1920 Ronald T. Stewart, No.288, 1923 Gordon P. Lawson, No.320, 1925 William Archie Strang, No.342, 1928 Thomas C. Metcalfe, No.384, 1931 George T. A. Adkins, No.409, 1935 Tom Morrison, No.441, 1938 Charles Saxton, No.443, 1938 Maurice P. Goddard, No.467, 1946 Lachlan A. Grant, No.471, 1947 John W. Goddard, No.499, 1949 Thomas Coughlan, No.592, 1958 Allan J. Stewart, No.638, 1963 Tom N. Lister, No.673, 1968 Lyn Jaffray, No.711, 1972To view player profile, go to allblacks.com Brendan Laney Otago Highlanders Graham Dempster Canterbury Crusaders S
New Zealand national rugby union team
The New Zealand national rugby union team, called the All Blacks, represents New Zealand in men's rugby union, known as the country's national sport. The team has won the last two Rugby World Cups, in 2011 and 2015 as well as the inaugural tournament in 1987, they have a 77% winning record in test match rugby, are the only international men’s side with a winning record against every opponent. Since their international debut in 1903, they have lost to only six of the 19 nations they have played in test matches. Since the introduction of the World Rugby Rankings in 2003, New Zealand has held the number one ranking longer than all other teams combined; the All Blacks jointly hold the record for the most consecutive test match wins for a tier one ranked nation, along with England. New Zealand competes with Argentina and South Africa in The Rugby Championship; the All Blacks have won the trophy sixteen times in the competition's twenty-three-year history. New Zealand have completed a Grand Slam tour four times – 1978, 2005, 2008 and 2010.
The All Blacks have been named the World Rugby Team of the Year ten times since the award was created in 2001, an All Black has won the World Rugby Player of the Year award ten times over the same period. Fifteen former All Blacks have been inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame; the team's first match was in 1884, their first international test match was in 1903 against Australia in Sydney. The following year, they hosted their first home test, a match against a British Isles side in Wellington; this was followed by a 34-game tour of Europe and North America in 1905, where the team suffered only one defeat – their first test loss, against Wales. New Zealand's early uniforms consisted of a black jersey with a silver fern and white knickerbockers. By the 1905 tour, they were wearing all black, except for the silver fern, the name All Blacks dates from this time; the team perform a Māori challenge or posture dance, before each match. The haka has traditionally been Te Rauparaha's Ka Mate, although since 2005 Kapa o Pango has been performed.
Rugby union – universally referred to only as "rugby" in New Zealand – was introduced to New Zealand by Charles Monro in 1870. The first recorded game in New Zealand took place in May 1870 in Nelson between the Nelson club and Nelson College; the first provincial union, the Canterbury Rugby Football Union, was formed in 1879, in 1882 New Zealand's first internationals were played when New South Wales toured the country. NSW did not face a New Zealand representative team but played seven provincial sides – the tourists won four games and lost three. Two years the first New Zealand team to travel overseas toured New South Wales. A organised British team, which became the British and Irish Lions, toured New Zealand in 1888. No test matches were played, the side only played provincial sides; the British players were drawn from Northern England, but there were representatives from Wales and Scotland. In 1892, following the canvassing of provincial administrators by Ernest Hoben, the New Zealand Rugby Football Union was formed by the majority of New Zealand's provincial unions, but did not include Canterbury, Otago or Southland.
The first sanctioned New Zealand side toured New South Wales in 1893, where the Thomas Ellison captained team won nine of their ten matches. The following year New Zealand played its first home "international" game, losing 8–6 to New South Wales; the team's first true test match occurred against Australia on 15 August 1903 at the Sydney Cricket Ground in front of over 30,000 spectators, resulted in a 22–3 victory. A representative New Zealand team first toured the British Isles in 1905; the side is now known as the "Originals", as the "All Blacks" name emerged during this tour when, according to team member Billy Wallace, a London newspaper reported that the New Zealanders played as if they were "all backs". Wallace claimed that because of a typographical error, subsequent references were to "All Blacks"; this account is most a myth – because of their black playing strip, the side was referred to as the Blacks before they left New Zealand. Though the name All Blacks most existed before the trip, the tour did popularise it.
The Originals played 35 matches on tour, their only loss was a 3–0 defeat to Wales in Cardiff. The match has entered into the folklore of both countries because of a controversy over whether All Black Bob Deans scored a try which would have earned his team a 3–3 draw. In contrast to the success of the Originals on the field, the team did antagonise some in the Home Nations' rugby establishment; this complaint continued to dog New Zealand teams until the 1930s. The success of the Originals had uncomfortable consequences for the amateur NZRFU. In 1907, a party of professional players was assembled to tour the British Isles and play rugby league – a professional offshoot of rugby union, played by clubs that split from England's Rugby Football Union due to disagreements over financial compensation for players; when the "All Golds", as the team came to be known, returned they established rugby league in New Zealand, a large number of players switched to the professional code. English and Welsh authorities were alarmed by the threat of professionalism to rugby in New Zealand, in 1908 an Anglo-Welsh side undertook a tour to New Zealand to help promote the amateu
The Ranfurly Shield, colloquially known as the Log o' Wood, is a trophy in New Zealand's domestic rugby union competition. First played for in 1904, the Shield is based on a challenge system, rather than a league or knockout competition as with most football trophies; the holding union must defend the shield in challenge matches, which are played at the shield holders home venue, if the challenger is successful in their challenge they will become the new holder of the Shield. Although the professional era of rugby has seen other competitions, such as the ITM Cup and Super Rugby, detracting from the pre-eminence of the Ranfurly Shield, many still regard it as the greatest prize in New Zealand domestic rugby; this is due to its long history, the fact that every challenge is a sudden-death defence of the Shield, that any team, no matter how lowly, has a chance to win. The Shield is held by Otago, who claimed it from Waikato on 13 October 2018 at FMG Stadium Waikato in Hamilton. In 1901 the Governor of New Zealand, The 5th Earl of Ranfurly, announced that he would present a cup to the New Zealand Rugby Football Union to be used as the prize in a competition of their choosing.
When the trophy, a shield, the NZRFU decided that it would be awarded to the union with the best record in the 1902 season, thenceforth be the subject of a challenge system. Auckland, unbeaten in 1902, was presented with the shield; the shield was designed as a trophy for not rugby. The picture in the centrepiece was a soccer one, was modified by adding goal posts on the soccer goal in the picture to create a rugby scene; the alterations to the centrepiece are still apparent. Auckland were on tour in 1903 and did not play any home games, thus did not have to defend the Shield, their first defence was against Wellington in 1904, was unsuccessful. Since the introduction of the National Provincial Championship in 1976, all home games a Shield-holder plays in the NPC or its successors, the ITM Cup and Heartland Championship, are automatically challenge matches. Auckland holds the record for the greatest number of consecutive Shield defences, 61 matches between 14 September 1985 and 18 September 1993.
During this period Auckland took the Shield on tour to provincial unions that for financial reasons, would be unlikely to be able to mount a challenge for the trophy. While dismissed by some critics because of the one-sided scores, it was regarded as a success by those involved. In 1994 when Canterbury wrested the Shield from Waikato, it was in battered condition, with large cracks and peeled varnish. Nearly a century of use had taken its toll. Canterbury player Chris England, skilled in woodwork renovated it, bringing it back into pristine condition; the Shield holder at the end of each season is required to accept at least seven challenges for the following year. All home games during league play, but not during knockout playoffs, in the Mitre 10 Cup or Heartland Championship are automatic challenges; the remaining shield defences must be made up of challenges from unions in the other domestic competition. For example, since North Harbour, an Air New Zealand Cup team, held the Shield at the end of the 2006 Cup season despite losing their home quarter-final to Otago, they were forced to defend the Shield against Heartland Championship teams during the 2007 pre-season.
Having done so, all their home fixtures in the round-robin phase were Shield defences until they lost the shield to Waikato. The Shield-holder is never forced to defend the Shield in an away match, although they may choose to, as Auckland, for example, did on a number of occasions during their record tenure between 1985 and 1993. More Auckland played both their mandatory defences against Heartland teams in 2008 on the road. If a challenger takes the Shield, all of their home matches for the rest of the season are defences of it. In August 2008, the New Zealand Rugby Union released a competitions review that proposed dramatic changes to the Shield rules: Once a team has defended the Shield four times, all of the holder's subsequent matches in league play would be mandatory defences, whether home or away; the Shield will not be at stake in finals. If an Air New Zealand Cup team holds the Shield at the end of the league season, that season's winners of the Meads Cup and Lochore Cup, the two trophies contested in the second-level Heartland Championship, will receive automatic challenges in the following year.
The changes were not implemented but did receive support from Auckland, which held the Shield when the NZRU released its report. Just under half of the unions that can contest for the Ranfurly Shield do not have an alias. South Canterbury's emblem is their own Coat of Arms, but a soldier represents current mascot, Tim and Ru. The mascots were used during wartime and were created by Ronald Murray. Many of the unions below have this situation, like Poverty Bay's Moa, it resembles their mascot after the 2011 squads post-match photo after the Lochore Cup final. Wairarapa's 1927-era saw them lose to Hawke's Bay 21–10 at Solway Showgrounds Oval, but was subsequently awarded the shield back on a residential breach. Last updated: after Otago's victory against Waikato on 13 October 2018. Ranfurly Shield 2010–2019 Rampant Aucks take the 2007 shield Ranfurly Shield at nzrugby.com
Hosea Emiliano Gear is a New Zealand rugby union player. He plays for Clermont-Ferrand in the Top 14 as a wing, he has played 14 international matches for New Zealand. The younger brother of Rico Gear, he was born in Gisborne, New Zealand, where he attended Gisborne Boys' High School, he is of the Ngāti Porou Iwi. He holds the record for most tries in a provincial season with 14 in the 2008 Air New Zealand Cup, he has played for the New Zealand Maori. After his outstanding performance for Wellington in the 2008 Air New Zealand Cup, he was chosen for the All Blacks to tour Hong Kong and Europe on 26 October 2008 and made his debut against Australia in the Bledisloe Cup on 1 November. In 2010 Gear made his Rugby Sevens debut in the 2010 Commonwealth Games for New Zealand and was chosen for the All Blacks end of year tour. After an injury to Cory Jane, Gear was given a starting spot against England, a game in which he scored the first try; the following week vs Scotland Gear once again scored the first try and went on to score another in the All Blacks 49–3 win.
Again Gear scored the first Try in the All Blacks vs Wales game going on to score another to top off a great international year. Gear narrowly missed selection to the New Zealand squad for the 2011 Rugby World Cup. However, after a string of injuries to the All Black's squad, Gear was called up prior to the semi final match against the Wallabies, he was not named in the twenty-two man team to play the match. He received a World Cup winner's medal after the final which New Zealand won 8–7, but he was not in the match-day 22. Highlanders profile Hosea Gear at AllBlacks.com
Rugby union known in most of the world as rugby, is a contact team sport which originated in England in the first half of the 19th century. One of the two codes of rugby football, it is based on running with the ball in hand. In its most common form, a game is between two teams of 15 players using an oval-shaped ball on a rectangular field with H-shaped goalposts at each end. Rugby union is a popular sport around the world, played by male and female players of all ages. In 2014, there were more than 6 million people playing worldwide, of whom 2.36 million were registered players. World Rugby called the International Rugby Football Board and the International Rugby Board, has been the governing body for rugby union since 1886, has 101 countries as full members and 18 associate members. In 1845, the first football laws were written by Rugby School pupils. An amateur sport, in 1995 restrictions on payments to players were removed, making the game professional at the highest level for the first time.
Rugby union spread from the Home Nations of Great Britain and Ireland and was absorbed by many of the countries associated with the British Empire. Early exponents of the sport included New Zealand, South Africa and France. Countries that have adopted rugby union as their de facto national sport include Fiji, Madagascar, New Zealand and Tonga. International matches have taken place since 1871 when the first game took place between Scotland and England at Raeburn Place in Edinburgh; the Rugby World Cup, first held in 1987, takes place every four years. The Six Nations Championship in Europe and The Rugby Championship in the Southern Hemisphere are other major international competitions, held annually. National club or provincial competitions include the Premiership in England, the Top 14 in France, the Mitre 10 Cup in New Zealand, the National Rugby Championship in Australia, the Currie Cup in South Africa. Other transnational club competitions include the Pro14 in Europe and South Africa, the European Rugby Champions Cup in Europe, Super Rugby, in the Southern Hemisphere and Japan.
The origin of rugby football is reputed to be an incident during a game of English school football at Rugby School in 1823, when William Webb Ellis is said to have picked up the ball and run with it. Although the evidence for the story is doubtful, it was immortalised at the school with a plaque unveiled in 1895. Despite the doubtful evidence, the Rugby World Cup trophy is named after Webb Ellis. Rugby football stems from the form of game played at Rugby School, which former pupils introduced to their university. Old Rugbeian Albert Pell, a student at Cambridge, is credited with having formed the first "football" team. During this early period different schools used different rules, with former pupils from Rugby and Eton attempting to carry their preferred rules through to their universities. A significant event in the early development of rugby football was the production of the first written laws of the game at Rugby School in 1845, followed by the Cambridge Rules drawn up in 1848. Other important events include the Blackheath Club's decision to leave the Football Association in 1863 and the formation of the Rugby Football Union in 1871.
The code was known as "rugby football". Despite the sport's full name of rugby union, it is known as rugby throughout most of the world; the first rugby football international was played on 27 March 1871 between Scotland and England in Edinburgh. Scotland won the game 1-0. By 1881 both Ireland and Wales had representative teams, in 1883 the first international competition, the Home Nations Championship had begun. 1883 is the year of the first rugby sevens tournament, the Melrose Sevens, still held annually. Two important overseas tours took place in 1888: a British Isles team visited Australia and New Zealand—although a private venture, it laid the foundations for future British and Irish Lions tours. During the early history of rugby union, a time before commercial air travel, teams from different continents met; the first two notable tours both took place in 1888—the British Isles team touring New Zealand and Australia, followed by the New Zealand team touring Europe. Traditionally the most prestigious tours were the Southern Hemisphere countries of Australia, New Zealand and South Africa making a tour of a Northern Hemisphere, the return tours made by a joint British and Irish team.
Tours would last for months, due to the number of games undertaken. Touring international sides would play Test matches against international opponents, including national and county sides in the case of Northern Hemisphere rugby, or provincial/state sides in the case of Southern Hemisphere rugby. Between 1905 and 1908, all three major Southern Hemisphere rugby countries sent their first touring teams to the Northern Hemisphere: New Zealand in 1905, followed by South Africa in 1906 and Australia in 1908. All three teams brought new styles of play, fitness levels and tactics, were far more successful than critics had expected; the New Zealand 1905 touri
Manawatu Rugby Union
Manawatu Rugby Football Union is the governing body of the sport of rugby union in the Manawatu province. Founded in 1886, Manawatu is one of New Zealand's oldest rugby unions. In 1892, the MRU, amongst other unions, was instrumental in the founding of the New Zealand Rugby Union. In 1997–98 Manawatu entered into an amalgamation with Hawke's Bay, as the Central Vikings, wore orange and blue; the union is based in the city of Palmerston North though its catchment area includes players and clubs from nearby towns in the province, including Ashhurst, Rongotea, Bulls, Pahiatua and Dannevirke. It has over 5,000 players, making it the tenth largest union in New Zealand in terms of player numbers. In 2011, the union celebrated its 125th jubilee. Manawatu have traditionally played in a distinctive green and white tramline jersey, thought to have been established in 1909. In 1996, a jersey including red was worn, colours worn have varied since the union was formed; the union's home ground is Central Energy Trust Arena.
It was host to two. The Manawatu Turbos are the premier men's team in the Manawatu rugby province. In 2005, Manawatu were invited to play in the first division of a restructured National Provincial Championship called the Air New Zealand Cup; as well as propelling Manawatu into professional rugby, it was the first time since 1988 the top grade competition would feature a team from the province. Manawatu have a reputation for fielding local talent; this has served mixed results however this approach has uncovered new exciting players who have made Super Rugby level and the All Blacks. The National Provincial Championship underwent a necessary format change to accommodate the limited window of availability of competition play before the 2011 Rugby World Cup, which divided the competition of 14 teams into two pools of 7; the Premiership and Championship. As Manawatu finished 13th of 14 in 2010, the team were placed in the Championship for 2011. For Manawatu Turbos' previous Air New Zealand Cup seasons see: 2008 2009 The Manawatu Turbos squad for the 2018 Mitre 10 Cup: There are 10 club teams which play at Senior A level.
They are: ‡ High School Old Boys-Marist is an amalgamation of High School Old Boys and Marist Rugby Clubs † Feilding Old Boys-Oroua is an amalgamation of the Feilding Old Boys and Oroua Rugby Clubs × Dannevirke Sports Club was affiliated with Hawke's Bay, however in 2007, it switched its affiliation to Manawatu. Other clubs include: ° Junior level only is played in Manawatu. Manawatu is in the Hurricanes catchment area, along with Wanganui, Hawke's Bay, Poverty Bay, East Coast, Horowhenua Kapiti, Wairarapa-Bush and Wellington. Current Manawatu players who have played for the Hurricanes: Chris Eves Nehe Milner-Skudder Ngani Laumape Otere BlackIn recent times, Manawatu have provided players to each of the other New Zealand Super Rugby franchises. Manawatu Players who have played for the Crusaders: Michael Alaalatoa Manawatu Players who have played for the Highlanders: Aaron Smith Jason Emery Maʻafu Fia Johnny Leota Hayden Triggs Nick Crosswell Doug TietjensManawatu Players who have played for the Chiefs: Aaron Cruden Michael Fitzgerald Asaeli Tikoirotuma Nick CrosswellManawatu players who have played for the Blues: Hamish NorthcottIn 2009, Central Energy Trust Arena was the venue for a Highlanders home game against the Bulls.
Manawatu Cyclones is the women's representative team. The Cyclones wear the same white tramline jersey design as the men's team. In 2005, the team was promoted from the Second Division. In 2006, Manawatu did not win a game in the competition, which saw the team play against the likes of Auckland and Otago. Manawatu drew with Hawke's Bay. In 2012, the Women's Provincial Championship format was a full round robin of six teams playing six rounds; the Cyclones began with a bye. Wins for the Cyclones were over Waikato and Hawke's Bay. Large losses to Otago and eventual finalists Auckland and Canterbury and missing crucial bonus points, meant the Cyclones did not make the post-season. Notable Cyclones: Current Selica Winiata Sarah GossPast Farah Palmer Rebecca Mahoney The Manawatu rugby union was formed on 17 April 1886 at Palmerston North, with the founding clubs being: Palmerston and Foxton, it was named the Manawatu County Union but was renamed in 1888. The sport had been introduced to the area by a few players from Wanganui, who had moved into the region.
Following the unions establishment many other clubs were formed. Early years The first recorded match in the Manawatu took place on 13 July 1878. A Feilding side faced a "Rangitikei Combined Clubs XV", played at Feilding; the first Ranfurly Shield game Manawatu appeared in was in 1914. This was played against Taranaki at Pukekura Park; the match was lost 11-3 with William Carroll scoring a sole try. Their next challenge came ten years in 1924, where they would lose 31-5 to Hawke's Bay. Manawatu provided J. F. Manning to referee a match in 1905 between Auckland and Wellington.1970s: Glory Days and Shield Era The period from 1976 to 1983 saw Manawatu as a powerhouse in New Zealand rugby. To date, the only Ranfurly Shield reign was followed by a National Provincial Championship victory in 1980. Manawatu were NPC runner-ups in 1976 and 1981. In the final Ranfurly Shield challenge of the 1978 season Manawatu were leading North Auckland 10–9 with
England national rugby union team
The England national rugby union team competes in the annual Six Nations Championship with France, Scotland and Wales. They have won this championship on a total of 28 occasions, 13 times winning the Grand Slam and 25 times winning the Triple Crown, making them the most successful outright winners in the tournament's history, they are ranked fourth in the world by the International Rugby Board as of 18 March 2019. England are to date the only team from the northern hemisphere to win the Rugby World Cup, when they won the tournament back in 2003, they were runners-up in 1991 and 2007. The history of the team extends back to 1871 when the English rugby team played their first official Test match, losing to Scotland by one try. England dominated the early Home Nations Championship which started in 1883. Following the schism of rugby football in 1895 into union and league, England did not win the Championship again until 1910. England first played against New Zealand in 1905, South Africa in 1906, Australia in 1909.
England was one of the teams invited to take part in the inaugural Rugby World Cup in 1987 and went on to appear in the final in the second tournament in 1991, losing 12–6 to Australia. Following their 2003 Six Nations Championship Grand Slam, they went on to win the 2003 Rugby World Cup – defeating Australia 20–17 in extra time, they again contested the final in 2007. England players traditionally wear a white shirt with a rose embroidered on the chest, white shorts, navy blue socks with a white trim, their home ground is Twickenham Stadium where they first played in 1910. The team is administered by the Rugby Football Union. Four former players have been inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame. Seven other former players are members of the IRB Hall—four for their accomplishments as players, two for their achievements in other roles in the sport, one for achievements both as a player and administrator; the expansion of rugby in the first half of the 19th century was driven by ex-pupils from many of England's Public Schools Rugby, upon finishing school, took the game with them to universities, to London, to the counties.
England's first international match was against Scotland on Monday 27 March 1871. Not only was this match England's first, but it proved to be the first rugby union international. Scotland won the match by a goal and a try to a try, in front of a crowd of 4,000 people at Raeburn Place, Edinburgh. A subsequent international took place at the Oval in London on 5 February 1872 which saw England defeat Scotland by a goal, a drop goal and two tries to one drop goal. In those early days there was no points system, it was only after 1890 that a format allowing the introduction of a points system was provided. Up until 1875 international rugby matches were decided by the number of goals scored, but from 1876 the number of tries scored could be used to decide a match if teams were level on goals. In 1875, England played their first game against the Irish at the Oval, winning by one goal, one drop goal and one try to nil. England defeated Scotland in 1880 to become the first winners of the Calcutta Cup.
Their first match against Wales was played on 19 February 1881 at Richardson's Field in Blackheath. England recorded their largest victory, defeating the Welsh by seven goals, six tries, one drop goal to nil and scoring 13 tries in the process; the subsequent meeting the following year at St Helens in Swansea was a closer contest. In 1889, England played their first match against a non-home nations team when they defeated the New Zealand Natives by one goal and four tries to nil at Rectory Field in Blackheath. In 1890 England shared the Home Nations trophy with Scotland. England first played New Zealand in 1905; the All Blacks scored five tries, worth three points at this time, to win 15–0. The following year, they played France for the first time, that year they first faced South Africa; the match was drawn 3–3. England first played France in 1905, Australia in 1909 when they were defeated 9–3; the year 1909 saw the opening of Twickenham as the RFU's new home, which heralded a golden era for English rugby union.
England's first international at Twickenham was in 1910 and brought them victory over Wales, England went on to win the International Championship for the first time since the great schism of 1895. Although England did not retain the title in 1911, they did share it in 1912. A Five Nations Grand Slam was achieved in 1913 and 1914 as well as in 1921 following the First World War. England subsequently won the Grand Slam in 1924 and as well as in 1925; this was despite having started 1925 with a loss to the All Black Invincibles in front of 60,000 fans at Twickenham. After winning another Grand Slam in 1928, England played the Springboks in front of 70,000 spectators at Twickenham in 1931. Following the ejection of France due to professionalism in 1930, which thus reverted The Five Nations back to the Home Nations tournament, England went on to win the 1934 and 1937 Home Nations with a Triple Crown, in 1935 achieved their first victory over the All Blacks; when the Five Nations resumed with the re-admission of France in 1947 after the Second World War