Rugby union in Scotland
Rugby union in Scotland is a popular team sport. Scotland's national side today competes in the annual Six Nations Championship and the Rugby World Cup; the first international rugby match was played on 27 March 1871, at Raeburn Place in Edinburgh, when Scotland defeated England in front of 4,000 people. Professional clubs compete in the Pro14, European Rugby Champions Cup and European Rugby Challenge Cup, while the Scottish League Championship exists for over 200 amateur and semi-professional clubs, as does a knock-out competition, the Scottish Cup; the governing body, the Scottish Rugby Union, is one of the ten first-tier member nations of World Rugby. The governing body of the game in Scotland is the Scottish Rugby Union, who operate the Scottish national team. There is a long tradition of "football" games in Scotland, many of these such as Jeddart Ball bear more resemblance to rugby than association football, since passing and carrying by hand play a large part in them; the Kirkwall Ba game still takes place, involves scrummaging.
Scottish soccer enthusiasts cite these games as ancestral to their sport. There is evidence for schoolboys playing a "football" ball game in Aberdeen in 1633, notable as an early allusion to what some have considered to be passing the ball; the word "pass" in the most recent translation is derived from "huc percute" and repercute pilam in the original Latin. It is not certain; the original word translated as "goal" is metum meaning the "pillar at each end of the circus course" in a Roman chariot race. There is a reference to "get hold of the ball before does" suggesting that handling of the ball was allowed. One sentence states in the original 1930 translation "Throw yourself against him", it is clear that the game was rough and tackles allowed included the "charging" and pushing/holding of opposing players. It has been suggested. Contrary to media reports in 2006 there is no reference to forward passing, game rules, marking players or team formation; these reports described it as "an amazing new discovery" but has been well documented in football history literature since the early 20th century and available on the internet since at least 2000.
The world's oldest continual rugby fixture was first played in 1858 between Merchiston Castle School and the former pupils of The Edinburgh Academy. Scotland was responsible for organising the first rugby international when a side representing England met the Scottish national side on the cricket field of the Edinburgh Academy at their Raeburn Place ground on 27 March 1871; the Scottish Football Union - named SRU - was founded in 1873 and was a founding member of the International Rugby Board in 1886 with Ireland and Wales.. Since that time, Scotland have been regular winners of the Calcutta Cup, the five nations championship, have been participants of the Six Nations Championship, every Rugby World Cup. Scotland has played a seminal role in the development of rugby, notably in rugby sevens, which were conceived by Ned Haig, a butcher from Melrose as a fundraising event for his local club in 1883; the first officially sanctioned international tournament of rugby occurred at Murrayfield as part of the "Scottish Rugby Union's celebration of rugby" centenary celebrations in 1973.
Due to the success of the format, the ongoing Hong Kong Sevens was launched three years later. In 1993, the Rugby World Cup Sevens was launched and the trophy is known as the Melrose Cup in memory of Ned Haig's invention. In 1924 the SFU changed its name to the Scottish Rugby Union. International games were played at Inverleith from 1899 to 1925. See Scottish rugby union system Historically rugby union was an amateur sport, but the dawn of professionalism changed the way in which the game was structured; the game is divided into non-professional spheres. There had been a domestic league that covered the country, the top division of, the elite of club rugby in Scotland; this league was established in the early 1970s to replace the complicated "unofficial championship", competed for previously. Starting in the 1973–74 season, the clubs were organised into a league of six divisions - what today comprises the Scottish Premiership and National League elements of the League Championship. Below the six divisions were a series of District Leagues, covering smaller geographical areas, organised by District Unions and sometimes involving second XVs.
Over a period of time, these District divisions have been reformed and integrated into the Scottish rugby union system meaning that today, only four clubs don't have their first XVs in the interconnected league structure. The entire system is sponsored by the Royal Bank of Scotland, making it known as the RBS League Championship; this league contains Scottish rugby union's traditional big name clubs, such as Melrose and Hawick, as well as major city clubs such as Boroughmuir and Watsonians from Edinburgh, Glasgow Hawks who were formed from an amalgamation of clubs in the 1990s. Traditionally, rugby clubs were formed by universities, ex-pupils of independent schools and large state schools, many clubs names still to this day includ
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
Andrew Gavin Hastings, is a Scottish former rugby union player. A fullback, he is regarded to be one of the best Scottish rugby players and was one of the outstanding players of his generation, winning 61 caps for Scotland, 20 of which as captain, he played for Watsonians, London Scottish, Cambridge University and the British Lions. He twice toured with the British and Irish Lions, to Australia in 1989 and as captain on the 1993 tour to New Zealand. Hastings was born in Edinburgh, was educated at George Watson's College, Paisley College of Technology, Magdalene College, where he read Land Economy and graduated with a BA in 1986, he captained the victorious 1985 Cambridge University side, during his sabbatical year he won the Gallaher Shield with Auckland University. In Scotland, Hastings played for Watsonians. Hastings played for Edinburgh District in the era before professionalism; when the top sides of rugby union turned professional in 1996, he was playing for London Scottish. Hastings captained the first Scottish schoolboys' side to win on English soil.
He made his debut for Scotland against France in 1986 and was a central figure in Scotland's 1990 Five Nations Grand Slam. His final game was on 11 June 1995 against New Zealand in Pretoria at the quarter-finals of the 1995 Rugby World Cup. By the end of that match he had scored 667 international points, a Scottish record that stood until surpassed by Chris Paterson in 2008, he captained Scotland on 20 occasions including at the 1995 World Cup. He first played for the British and Irish Lions in 1986, against a Rest of the World XV, before playing in all three tests of the successful 1989 tour to Australia and against France in 1989, he was captain on the 1993 tour to New Zealand, where the Lions lost the test series 2-1. On 30 August 2007 he was announced as the chairman of the "New" Edinburgh professional rugby club. In 1996, Hasting joined, he played a single season as a placekicker scoring 24 of 27 conversions but missed his only attempt at a field goal. Despite the Claymores winning the World Bowl, Hastings was released at the end of the season.
His younger brother Scott was a Scotland international rugby union player. His son, Adam plays for Glasgow Warriors and has represented Scotland, his wife Diane, whom he married in 1993 was diagnosed with Parkinsons Disease in 2003. His nickname is "Big Gav". Hastings was awarded the Order of the British Empire in 1993 for services to Rugby Union, he was inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame in 2003 and into the World Rugby Hall of Fame in 2013. Gavin Hastings on the Sporting Heroes website Gavin Hastings profile on the ESPN website
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
Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland and one of its 32 council areas. Part of the county of Midlothian, it is located in Lothian on the Firth of Forth's southern shore. Recognised as the capital of Scotland since at least the 15th century, Edinburgh is the seat of the Scottish Government, the Scottish Parliament and the supreme courts of Scotland; the city's Palace of Holyroodhouse is the official residence of the monarch in Scotland. The city has long been a centre of education in the fields of medicine, Scots law, philosophy, the sciences and engineering, it is the second largest financial centre in the United Kingdom and the city's historical and cultural attractions have made it the United Kingdom's second most popular tourist destination, attracting over one million overseas visitors each year. Edinburgh is Scotland's second most populous city and the seventh most populous in the United Kingdom; the official population estimates are 488,050 for the Locality of Edinburgh, 513,210 for the City of Edinburgh, 1,339,380 for the city region.
Edinburgh lies at the heart of the Edinburgh and South East Scotland city region comprising East Lothian, Fife, Scottish Borders and West Lothian. The city is the annual venue of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, it is home to national institutions such as the National Museum of Scotland, the National Library of Scotland and the Scottish National Gallery. The University of Edinburgh, founded in 1582 and now one of four in the city, is placed 18th in the QS World University Rankings for 2019; the city is famous for the Edinburgh International Festival and the Fringe, the latter being the world's largest annual international arts festival. Historic sites in Edinburgh include Edinburgh Castle, the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the churches of St. Giles and the Canongate, the extensive Georgian New Town, built in the 18th/19th centuries. Edinburgh's Old Town and New Town together are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, managed by Edinburgh World Heritage since 1999. "Edin", the root of the city's name, derives from Eidyn, the name for this region in Cumbric, the Brittonic Celtic language spoken there.
The name's meaning is unknown. The district of Eidyn centred on the dun or hillfort of Eidyn; this stronghold is believed to have been located at Castle Rock, now the site of Edinburgh Castle. Eidyn was conquered by the Angles of Bernicia in the 7th century and by the Scots in the 10th century; as the language shifted to Old English, subsequently to modern English and Scots, The Brittonic din in Din Eidyn was replaced by burh, producing Edinburgh. Din became dùn in Scottish Gaelic, producing Dùn Èideann; the city is affectionately nicknamed Auld Reekie, Scots for Old Smoky, for the views from the country of the smoke-covered Old Town. Allan Ramsay said. A name the country people give Edinburgh from the cloud of smoke or reek, always impending over it."Thomas Carlyle said, "Smoke cloud hangs over old Edinburgh,—for since Aeneas Silvius's time and earlier, the people have the art strange to Aeneas, of burning a certain sort of black stones, Edinburgh with its chimneys is called'Auld Reekie' by the country people."A character in Walter Scott's The Abbot says "... yonder stands Auld Reekie--you may see the smoke hover over her at twenty miles' distance."Robert Chambers who said that the sobriquet could not be traced before the reign of Charles II attributed the name to a Fife laird, Durham of Largo, who regulated the bedtime of his children by the smoke rising above Edinburgh from the fires of the tenements.
"It's time now bairns, to tak' the beuks, gang to our beds, for yonder's Auld Reekie, I see, putting on her nicht -cap!"Some have called Edinburgh the Athens of the North for a variety of reasons. The earliest comparison between the two cities showed that they had a similar topography, with the Castle Rock of Edinburgh performing a similar role to the Athenian Acropolis. Both of them had fertile agricultural land sloping down to a port several miles away. Although this arrangement is common in Southern Europe, it is rare in Northern Europe; the 18th-century intellectual life, referred to as the Scottish Enlightenment, was a key influence in gaining the name. Such luminaries as David Hume and Adam Smith shone during this period. Having lost most of its political importance after the Union, some hoped that Edinburgh could gain a similar influence on London as Athens had on Rome. A contributing factor was the neoclassical architecture that of William Henry Playfair, the National Monument. Tom Stoppard's character Archie, of Jumpers, said playing on Reykjavík meaning "smoky bay", that the "Reykjavík of the South" would be more appropriate.
The city has been known by several Latin names, such as Aneda or Edina. The adjectival form of the latter, can be seen inscribed on educational buildings; the Scots poets Robert Fergusson and Robert Burns used Edina in their poems. Ben Jonson described it as "Britaine's other eye", Sir Walter Scott referred to it as "yon Empress of the North". Robert Louis Stevenson a son of the city, wrote, "Edinburgh is what Paris ought to be"; the colloquial pronunciation "Embra" or "Embro" has been used, as in Robert Garioch's Embro to the Ploy. The earliest known human habitation in the Edinburgh area was at Cramond, where evidence was found of a Mesolithi
Jason White (rugby union)
Jason Phillip Randall White is a Scottish former rugby union footballer. He was a utility forward who played in the second or back row of the scrum – lock, flanker, or number eight. White played at club level for Glasgow Caledonians, he won 77 caps playing for Scotland. White grew up in The Paddock, Peterculter and was educated at Cults Academy and at George Watson's College in Edinburgh, leaving in 1996, he first started playing rugby union when a friend invited him to join a local team in Aberdeen – Aberdeen Wanderers. He rose through the ranks of the Scotland Under-18 and Under-21 Squads, he was named the new captain of the Scotland national team by Scotland coach Frank Hadden after an injury to Jon Petrie. White led them for the first time in the test against Argentina at Murrayfield on 12 November 2005, he led them in the famous win against France on 4 February 2006 at Murrayfield when he earned his 50th Scottish cap. Shortly after he led Scotland to another famous victory, 18–12 over the'Auld Enemy' at Murrayfield, therefore recovering the Calcutta Cup.
He received the Man of the Match award for his outstanding contribution to the victory. In the final fixture, White hit Andrea Lo Cicero so hard; this penalty was kicked by Chris Paterson to secure a 13–10 victory for Scotland. The tackle was similar to the one on Joe Worsley in the Calcutta Cup match which snuffed out the final England attack. On 21 April 2006, White was named The Famous Grouse Scotland Player of the Season 2005–06. In the tenth year of the awards it was the first time that a serving Scotland captain has been declared winner. On 10 May 2006 he received the Guinness Premiership Player's Player of the Year Award after receiving the same accolade in his native Scotland. In the 2005–06 season, White started the final as Sale Sharks won their first Premiership title. White was named in a "World XV of the year" chosen in The New Zealand Herald newspaper in 2006. In recognition of both his skills and sportsmanship his founding influence Aberdeen Wanderers RFC renamed their pavilion in his honour in April 2006.
In January 2007, White was awarded the Pat Marshall Memorial Award for season 2005–06 by the Rugby Union Writers' Club. White was out of action from November 2006 until August 2007 after having sustained an injury to his anterior cruciate ligament in the 2006 Autumn test match against Romania, he returned to the Scotland squad in their 2007 Rugby World Cup warm-up against Ireland at Murrayfield on 11 August, captaining the side to a 31–21 win. He was again the captain of Scotland at the World Cup finals. White joined Clermont Auvergne in 2009 after signing from Sale Sharks, he was released by them in 2012. He is married to Beverly. Together they have a daughter called Annabelle. ESPN profile Scotland profile White Scoops Another Award, SRU page, 11 May 2006 Hit machine White ready to tackle the final frontier, The Times, 27 May 2006 Announcement of Lions callup at official Scotland Rugby site.
Louis Moritz Speirs
Louis Moritz Speirs was a Scottish rugby union international who played ten times for his country and was part of the first official British and Irish Lions team that toured South Africa in 1910. Louis Moritz Speirs was born on 23 October 1885 in Glendevon, Scotland, the son of Ebenezer B Speirs, the Minister of Glendevon Parish and his wife Marie, born in Ronilly, West Prussia. Between 1891 and 1901 his father died and the family moved to Edinburgh Morningside. Here, the young Moritz, as he was referred to, went to school. Speirs played for the Watsonians the club for the old boys of George Watson's College, he was part of the clubest greatest side that won five Scottish Club Championships between 1908 and 1914. In the 1909/10 season he was a member of the team, undefeated against Scottish opposition during that entire season. Speirs made his Test debut for Scotland vs South Africa at Glasgow on 17 November 1906, he played in a further 9 matches for his country between 1906 and 1910 all of which were in the Five Nations tournament.
His last Test being a Calcutta Cup match against England at Inverleith on 19 March 1910. In 1910 he was selected for the first official British tour to South Africa. In 1912 Speirs emigrated to Canada. However, during the First World War he enlisted in the Canadian 16th Battalion and found himself back across the Atlantic. On 16 January 1915 he captained a Canadian Army rugby union side against a Bath XV during which he dislocated his shoulder. However, he was able to join his team mates at the Red House where Bath Football Club were entertaining them before going on to a pantomime, he was captured during the war but managed to escape from a POW camp in 1918