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A rough guide to the Women’s Rugby World Cup

13 August 2010

England Women celebrate their victory over New Zealand at Twickenham in 2009

Photo: Getty Images

With the Women’s Rugby World Cup 2010 just seven days away, is offering fans a rough guide to the prestigious tournament which takes place across Surrey and Middlesex from August 20 until September 5.

The 12 best rugby nations from across the globe will compete in what is expected to be the biggest women’s rugby world cup ever.

2010 and beyond

  • Playing on home turf will be a massive advantage for England and on the back of an incredible victory against New Zealand last November, and a fantastic 2010 RBS 6 Nations, they will be seen as the team to watch
  • The WRWC takes place over five match days, with all pool games being played on the first three days (August 20, 24 and 28) at the impressive multi million pound Surrey Sports Park in Guildford. The semi-finals and final will take place at the Twickenham Stoop on September 1 and 5, with the consolation ranking games being played on the same days but at Surrey Sports Park
  • The WRWC is divided into three pools based on the 2009 standings of each of the 12 countries taking part. The pools are as follows:

Women's Rugby World Cup pools
Pool A: New Zealand Wales Australia South Africa
Pool B: England USA Ireland Kazakhstan
Pool C: France Canada Scotland Sweden

  • WRWC 2010 promises to be the biggest women’s rugby world cup to date. Taking place at the ‘home of rugby’, using Olympic standard facilities and with a huge local following, the event will bring together thousands of rugby fans
  • Sky Sports will also be broadcasting at least ten games live, including the semi finals and final, setting new broadcast records for a women’s rugby world cup

The History

New Zealand hoist the Women's Rugby World Cup up in front of their team-mates after New Zealand's 25-17 victory over England in 2006

Photo: Getty Images

  • The first WRWC was a much smaller event. It was held in 1991 in Wales and was won by the United States who beat England 19-6 in the final
  • Neither the 1991 nor the 1994 world cups were officially sanctioned by the IRB and it was not until the 1998 tournament held in the Netherlands that the tournament received official IRB backing. Since then, New Zealand have won all three successive titles
  • The 2002 WRWC is widely seen as the watershed tournament of women’s rugby. The level of rugby played by both New Zealand and England in the final set new standards for the game. It also laid the foundations of an arch rivalry between the two countries
  • The New Zealand/England rivalry continued into the 2006 world cup in Edmonton, Canada. Again New Zealand and England met in the final and again the Silver Ferns took home the cup, beating their rivals 25-17 in a thrilling encounter
  • Canada was the first non-European country to host the event and as before, new bars were set for the women’s game. The skills, strength and pace on display, not just in the final but throughout the competition captured new fans across the world

Players to watch

Emily Scaratt runs with the ball during a match against Italy


  • 20-year-old England centre/full back Emily Scarratt is expected to be one of the stars of the tournament. She debuted for England just two years ago at the tender age of 18. Since then she has scored 16 tries in 18 test matches and was one of the stand out players in this year’s RBS 6 Nations Championship
  • England’s old enemy New Zealand will be favourites to win on the back of their three successive world cup wins. Amiria Rule, who has featured in all three world cups, is bound to set the scoring records alight if past form is anything to go by
  • Canada’s Heather Moyse earned her place in her country’s sporting record books as the 2006 world cup top try scorer with a massive seven tries
  • France could well cause plenty of upsets. They’re playing some of their best rugby to date. They finished second in the RBS 6 Nations and could have potentially won it had they not suffered a shock defeat to Scotland in their opening game. They lost to England only by a point last March and will definitely come into this world cup with a point to prove
  • Australia will be targeting the world cup double this year having won the Women’s Rugby World Cup 7s in 2009
  • Hoping to add more silverware to the family cabinet will be Kristy Giteau who joins her brother in playing for the Australian national side
  • South Africa could be tagged as one of the underdogs of the tournament but having beaten Kazakhstan and Scotland this season the form book writers may well have to rewrite their books
  • It will be a fourth world cup for New Zealand lock Monalisa Codling while New Zealand’s Amiria Rule, Victoria Heighway, Emma Jensen, Fiao’o Faamausili and Casey Robertson and England’s Amy Garnett will all be playing in their third world cups
  • But perhaps most amazing of all stats is that Sweden’s Jennie Ohman will be the only player to play in WRWC 2010 and the 1991 world cup