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Rugby World Cup History

The 1987 Rugby World Cup was hosted by both Australia and New Zealand. 32 matches were played from over a period of May 22 to June 20. The tournament featured one African nation, three Americas nations, one Asian nation, seven European nations and four Oceanic nations. One notable omission was the Springboks who were not competing due to the international sports boycott.

Seven places were automatically filled by the IRFB members, with invitations being sent out to fill remaining places. In total there were 16 nations in the competition. France played Australia in the semi-finals and New Zealand, Wales. New Zealand became the first ever World Cup Champions, defeating France 29 points to 9 at Eden Park in Auckland.

Year Host Final venue Teams Qualifying participants Matches played Winner Runner-up
1987 Australia New Zealand Eden Park 16 Invitation 32 New Zealand France
1991 Britain France Ireland Twickenham 16 32 32 Australia England
1995 South Africa Ellis Park 16 52 32 South Africa New Zealand
1999 Wales Millennium Stadium 20 65 41 Australia France
2003 Australia Telstra Stadium 20 80 48 England Australia
2007 France Stade de France 20 91 48 South Africa England
2011 New Zealand Eden Park 20 - - - -

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