To summarise (the detail is in earlier posts).
When we looked at all of the past RWCs since 1987, we found that:
- National history and geographic characteristics partly explain success (if skeptical, can you think of a land-locked country that has done well in RWC ?)
- Tradition (as measured by number of years playing the game) really matters
- National income (measured by GDP per capita) did not matter, and total population size had a negative effect (makes sense, rugby is not that strong in very large countries).
What does this mean ? To an extent it means that there is pre-determination due to natural effects in RWCs.