Sport

Counting down to The Rugby Championship: 15 things you should know

For the first time ever, two southern hemisphere teams will play a test match outside their core territories. They’ll battle it out in the northern hemisphere – right here in the UK!

London is hosting The Rugby Championship this weekend. It’s the final game of the 2016 competition, with the Argentina Pumas (the “home” team) taking on the Australia Wallabies.

And here’s everything else you need to know about this historic event…

1) Where to see it: Twickenham Stadium, London

2) When: 8 October 2016

3) Kickoff time: 7:30 p.m.

4) The rules: The regulations are exactly the same. The only difference between southern and northern hemisphere rugby is in style. While rugby as we know it tends to be slower and grittier, southern teams tend to play faster, more free-flowing games.

5) The Rugby Championship nations: New Zealand, South Africa, Australia and Argentina

6) Standings: Winning their first four matches, New Zealand have already claimed the title of The Rugby Championship – for a fourth straight year! So this test match between Argentina and Australia is about pride and positioning in the standings.

7) Format: The Rugby Championship has a six-round format, with each team playing the others at home and then away. Argentina v Australia is the last game in the sixth round.

8) Their last meeting: Australia beat Argentina in a Rugby Championship test held in Perth on 17 September 2016 by 36-20.

The Rugby Championship

9) History: Through 2015 Argentina and Australia have met each other 25 times. Australia won 19 of those matches, Argentina was victorious five times, and one game ended in a draw.

10) Significance: These teams are returning to London about a year after having faced each other at Twickenham in the semi-finals of the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

11) Rivalry: Since Argentina lost to Australia in the aforementioned 2015 World Cup (by a score of 15-29), the team is keen to defeat them this time around at the same venue.

12) Pumas background: Officially named Los Pumas, the Argentina national rugby team represent the country in international rugby union matches. They play in sky blue and white jerseys and are organised by the Argentine Rugby Union (UAR). The first rugby union match in Argentina was played in 1873, with the game having been brought over by British immigrants.

13) Wallabies background: The Australia national team are nicknamed the Wallabies. They play in gold and green jerseys. Australia have competed in all eight Rugby World Cups and have won on two occasions (in 1991 beating England and in 1999 triumphing France). Australia are governed by the Australian Rugby Union (ARU). Rugby’s origins date back to 1882 in New South Wales.

14) Best and worst matches: In their third ever meeting on 31 July 1983 in Brisbane, Argentina thumped Australia by a score of 18-3. Argentina’s worst defeat also came in Brisbane on 17 June 1995 when Australia clobbered them by 53-6.

15) Tickets: Limited tickets are available starting at just £20. Get all tickets right now at Ticketmaster.co.uk.

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