Rugby is a tough sport. This leads to several intense plays in every game. Some moments will live on forever. New moments are being created every year. Though one thing is for certain: these four moments are some of the greatest in Rugby history.
1. Munster’s Cinderella Story
Ireland’s Munster had been chasing the Heineken Cup. Munster can up short in several close games. Munster came close to securing the Cup on three occasions, but it wasn’t until 2006 when they defeated Biarritz did they take home the Cup. They won the prize again in 2008 when they defeated Toulouse.
Fans will never forget Munster’s struggles to winning their first Heineken Cup. It was more about the journey than the end result. For example, the 2002 game against Leicester where Neil Back secured a memorable steal, immortalizing the game forever. Munster went on to lose this game, but it only added to their legacy in the long run.
2. The 1995 Rugby World Cup
This world cup took place from May 25 to June 24, 1995. As the first major sporting event to take place in South Africa, it was quite memorable when South Africa itself won the World Cup. They defeated South Africa and France – the teams finishing second and third.
The final match was contested by New Zealand and South Africa. The match’s interest was increased due to the fact that both teams were undefeated heading into the match.
The match itself, while hotly contested, is only a piece of what makes the 1995 World Cup so memorable. After the match, wearing a Springbok jersey, Nelson Mandela presented the world cup to his own country’s team.
3. A Strange Attempt by The Barbarians
This series of lateral passes, and sometimes forward passes, will live in fame for its shear courage. The play itself is a thing of beauty to watch. Everyone member of The Barbarians played their roll perfectly. Some acted as blockers, and everyone knew exactly where to be.
Taking place in January of 1973, Gareth Edwards finishes the play by out running several pursuers across the line. Edwards may have scored the goal; however, it wouldn’t have been made possible if not for excellent coaching and team work.
This play is so well-known, people are still studying and analyzing this play to this day.
4. Webb Ellis’ Innovations
This is more legend than true story. In fact, no one knows if this really happened or not. Despite no physical proof, Webb Ellis is considered to be the inventor of Rugby.
Originating from Matthew Bloxam, the story claims that Webb Ellis was the first person to pick up a football and hold it in his arms. Up until this point, the only style of football involved kicking the ball to advance play. While it was perfectly fine to catch the ball, teammates could not advance passed the point of the catch unless it was kicked away. Bloxam claims that Ellis, ignoring the rules of plan, ran forward.
Controversy has followed this story for almost two centuries. However, many Rugby fans still believe that the sport of Rugby would not have existed if Webb Ellis hadn’t caught the ball and decided to run forward.
There are countless other memorable moments in the sport of Rugby. In fact, if you watch any game you will see a few of those moments yourself. The relaxed rules, the athletic players, and the general play style of the game promote hard hitting, fast paced action that can’t quite be achieved in other sports.