New Zealand rugby news probably dominates discussion on this particular sport worldwide as a result of its iron grip as the world best rugby team for most of its nearly 120 years of international rugby.

The New Zealand rugby team, known as the All Blacks, is the only international team that has beaten every other country more times than losing to them.

It holds the record of three World Cup titles with their traditional foes, South Africa; and has dominated the Southern Hemisphere competitions at international level (the Tri-Nation/Rugby Championship) and at franchise level (Super Rugby) with teams from Argentina, Australia and South Africa also playing in the two tiers.

The passion for rugby in New Zealand compensates for the country’s population which is by far the smallest of the top 10 rugby-playing nations in the world, and the influx of good rugby players from the nearby Pacific Islands, keep the New Zealand teams at the top of the pile.

New Zealand, with their trans-Tasman rivals Australia, hosted the first Rugby World Cup in 1987 and duly won the Webb Ellis Trophy.

They also won the 2011 World Cup at home and in England in 2015. New Zealand played their first international against their Tasman neighbours Australia in 1903, after international tours without test matches to and from both countries had been undertaken in the past.

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