Who has won RWCs ? (1 of 3)

Well, the list is set out in table 1 below.

A small sampling point to bear in mind. There have only been 7 editions of RWC to date since 1987.  In statistical theory terms, that is a small sample.  As statistics is all about drawing inferences about populations (think opinion polls……”we polled a representative sample of x thousand people and asked them….”), one needs to be cautious about generalisation.

A classic question, for example, is whether the All Blacks win ratio in RWC is a fair reflection of their un-doubted historic playing prowess.

Anyway, subject to the above, the hosts, finalists and winners so far enclosed below.  You will see that home advantage may or may not have accrued to the winner.  There would not appear to be a clear pattern.  England won its World Cup in Australia in 2003, i.e. a Northern Hemisphere team playing against a  Southern Hemisphere team on an away basis.  Both of the All Blacks wins in 1987 and 2011 were at home. By contrast, both of Australia’s wins have been when the RWC was hosted in the Northern Hemisphere.

Table 1  PAST RUGBY WORLD CUPS (1987 – 2011)
Year Host Nation(s) Winner Losing Finalist Southern Hemi- sphere win ?
1987 New Zealand / Australia New Zealand France Yes
1991 England / France / Wales / Scotland / Ireland Australia England Yes
1995 South Africa South Africa New Zealand Yes
1999 Wales / England / Ireland / Scotland / France Australia France Yes
2003 Australia England Australia No
2007 France / Wales South Africa England Yes
2011 New Zealand New Zealand France Yes
Sources: World Rugby website, own calculations

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Empirical Rugby

Empirical Rugby is a blog that provides fundmental insight into rugby union using empirical analysis of rugby data.

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