Rugby Pub Facts

More interesting rugby facts with which to wow your mates down the pub at the weekend.

- When England players are capped for their country they receive a red velvet cap. Unlike their football counterparts, they do not receive a new cap each time they represent their country. The initial cap is the only one they are given during their international career.

- Public interest was high when Munster took on New Zealand on October 31, 1978, as the game programme in Limerick sold out before the contest even kicked off. Demand for the souvenir was huge after Munster became the first Irish team to defeat the All Blacks, by a 12-0 scoreline, and the programme had to be re-printed.

- French rugby player Gaston Vareilles missed his international debut against Scotland in 1910 – because of a sandwich! When the team train stopped at Lyon, Vareilles jumped off the train and headed for the cafeteria on the platform. After waiting patiently for his sandwich, he returned to see his train disappearing into the distance. Vareilles was never picked for his country again.

- A match between Whitby and Corby was abandoned in 1989 because the Corby players were too drunk to continue. The referee called a halt to proceedings seven minutes into the second half with Corby already trailing 80-0.

- French rugby player Jean-Pierre Sault broke his ankle before a 1969 Five Nations meeting with Scotland in Paris. But it was not an injury suffered in heroic fashion in the middle of a battle. Instead, Sault tripped on the steps leading up from the dressing room as he was about to run out on the pitch.