The modern sport of Rugby League is being played today all over the world. Yet, the sport has its origins in late 19th century England. This interesting and challenging sport called rugby is very appreciated these days.
If you love rugby, then here is some interesting information about the Rugby League.
History of Rugby League
In 1895, several clubs from the north of England participated in the one unified rugby code of the time. These clubs broke away from their governing body to build their own competition.
They had great motivation. That would be to provide good compensation to the players for the time off work needed by playing in Saturday matches. That type of practice was outlawed by the Rugby Football Union.
Form that point, the game started to evolve. There were made some innovative structural changes and rules. All those changes created the sport that we all know today.
Key dates in the history of Rugby League
- In 1897, Batley won the first Challenge Cup Final.
- In 1902, a 2-division structure was introduced for clubs.
- In 1902, 13-a-side was introduced alongside the rugby’s distinctive play-the-ball movement.
- In 1907 was the First Rugby League tour of the United Kingdom by an overseas team. The tour party was the players from the New Zealand Union.
- In 1908, the Rugby League was played for the first time in Australia and New Zealand.
- In 1929, Wembley stages the first Challenge Cup Final.
- In 1933, France stages its first Rugby League match.
- In 1948, the Challenge Cup Final at Wembley became the first televised Rugby League match.
- In 1954, the Rugby League staged its first World Cup tournament.
- In 1969, substitutes were allowed at any time during the game.
- In 1981, the famous Fulham Rugby League club was formed.
- In 1983, on-field offenses were introduced by Sin Bin.
- In 1992, the 10-meter rule was introduced.
- In 1996, the Super League was introduced.
- In 2006, the United Kingdom staged the first extended overseas tour for more than 10 years.
- In 2007, the Millenium Magic Event was introduced.
- In 2008, the Great Britain team separated into England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales.
Rugby League worldwide
This sport is being played today in more than 70 countries throughout the world. There are states that have teams that play at a professional level. Those countries are England, Wales, Canada, France, Papua New Guinea, Australia, and New Zealand.
The rest of the states are semi-professional or amateurs. The strongest rugby league nations are England, Australia, New Zealand, and Tonga. The highest form of representative rugby league is the Rugby League World Cup.
The states that have contested World Cups are England, Scotland, Ireland, Australia, Wales, the USA, and Papua New Guinea. Australia won the 2017 Rugby League World Cup. So, it is the current World Champions.
The Rugby League European Federation develops rugby league in Europe and in the Northern Hemisphere. At the beginning of the 21st century, other states have taken up this game.
They started to compete in the international rugby league. These states are Chile, Czech Republic, Hungary, Turkey, Brazil, Ghana, Thailand, and Germany.