Rugby is one of the oldest sports in the world. That is why, when you trace the history of rugby you would find that there is a very long timeline which you have to follow. We would today detail the history of rugby in order to help you better understand how the sport has become so popular over a period of time.
Rugby was first played in 1823 in its official name. It was first played by William Webb Ellis, who disregarded the rules of traditional football and took the ball in his hands in Rugby School. Since then, this has been the most distinctive feature of the rugby game.
In order to honor the man who first started playing rugby, the World Cup of rugby is named William Webb Ellis Trophy.
While officially rugby was played in 1823 for the 1st time but there were a few other ball games which are similar to rugby which was played from 5th century to the 16th century. Some of them were known as folk football or shrove roll Tide football. These games were often played between neighboring towns or villages. The earlier rugby balls were made from pig’s bladder. That is why the rugby ball even today is oval in shape.
Even though, it’s documented history is not available for the unofficial rugby games but it is believed that even the Romans, as well as greeks, played a variation of the rugby game.
Since the game in the Rugby School in 1823, rules spared for rugby pretty quickly. The 1st university match was played between Oxford and Cambridge. This was in the year 1872. Also, the 1st international game was played between Scotland and England in the year 1871.
In the modern history of the game, England, in 2003 by winning the World Cup became the 1st team in the northern atmosphere to win the Rugby World Cup.
Thus, even though rugby in the official format was only played in and after 1823 but in the similar gaming formats, it has been played for centuries together. Also, in the Rio Olympics in 2016, it was included back in the Olympics. Thus, it gained some of its lost honor back on being included in the Olympics. With such a rich and old history behind it, it comes as no surprise that rugby has become one of the most popular games all over the world.