This book critically examines how rugby union has developed in recent years, in nations on the periphery of the sport. Focusing on people and places on the fringes, it examines contemporary issues and challenges within the global game.

Such a collection is timely, as the sport’s governing body seeks to expand influence and participation beyond the eight core nations, with the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan being the first time that that tournament has taken place outside of the core. Presenting case studies from Europe, Africa, North and South America, Asia and the Middle East, this collection offers an interdisciplinary account of a sport that is undergoing a period of significant change. Through examination of topics such as the development of rugby sevens and the growth of women’s rugby, it considers what the future may hold for the sport.

Rugby in Global Perspective is important reading for students of sport in society, the globalisation of sport, sports studies, sport development and associated fields. It is also a valuable resource for academic researchers working in rugby union or sport in the peripheral rugby nations, as well as those with an interest in cultural geography, sociology, development studies, events studies, event management and sport management.

chapter 1|11 pages

Japan 2019 and the internationalisation of rugby union

ByJohn Harris, Nicholas Wise

chapter 2|12 pages

Challenging the core

The rise of Argentina in international rugby
ByNicholas Wise, John Harris

chapter 3|13 pages

Against all odds

Fijiana’s flight from zero to hero in the Rugby World Cup
ByYoko Kanemasu, Gyozo Molnar

chapter 4|13 pages

From past to present

Is there room for professional rugby in the United States of America?
ByLindsey Gaston, Lara Killick

chapter 5|14 pages

Struggling for recognition

Developing rugby union in Lebanon
ByDanyel Reiche, Axel Maugendre

chapter 6|13 pages

‘Moufflons’ living precariously

The brief history of rugby union in Cyprus
ByMike Rayner

chapter 7|13 pages

Rugby and sport development in Brazil

From peripheral to centre stage
ByGareth Hall, Arianne Reis

chapter 8|14 pages

Rugby beyond the core in Africa

ByNicholas Wise

chapter 9|11 pages

Rugby towards 2030

ByJohn Harris