To coincide with the current tournament, RugbyPass created its Rugby World Cup Ultimate XV player picker, which features curated lists of notable individuals across each position, who have represented their country in previous tournaments. RubgyPass then asked its 80,000+ strong fanbase – and a selection of expert former players and pundits – to make their selections from our picker and help determine exactly which 15 players would make it into an all-time greats squad.
In addition to this, they were also asked to pick who they think the top coach and referee has been from Rugby World Cup history, plus which stadium is the definitive venue for playing tournament matches.
While there are many stadiums and grounds that have hosted some incredible games in Rugby World Cups gone by, it’s the iconic Twickenham, that fans have deemed the greatest, with a sizable 27% of the fan vote. While also well-known for hosting England’s home fixtures, other international tests and annual Six Nations matches, there have been numerous Rugby World Cup Pool and knockout games held at the 82,000-seater venue. This also includes two Finals in 1991 and 2015, respectively.
The south-west London stadium also beat the likes of Eden Park, Murrayfield, Lansdowne Road and the Stade de France, which will be the host of the 2023 tournament’s highly anticipated Final.
When making his selections for RugbyPass, All Blacks legend Andrew Mehrtens shared the fan’s views by also naming Twickenham as his preferred Rugby World Cup venue: “I’m going to say Twickenham is the most amazing stadium for World Cups. It’s hosted two Finals and when you hear the anthems there, it’s pretty damn special.”
Springboks hero and 2007 World Cup winner, Bobby Skinstad also picked ‘Twickers’ when making his selections and shared a heartwarming anecdote about his own experiences when playing at the stadium:
“Okay, Ellis Park is obviously close to my heart, but even though I might get slandered by my South African friends, I’m going with Twickenham. As well as it being one of the great cathedrals of sport, be it a World Cup or not, I’ve chosen this in memory of my old man.
“He was a doctor and I got him some tickets to what ended up being my last game at Twickenham. In this particular match, I dislocated my shoulder and got knocked out. So I was there lying on my back and when I came to there was a circle of players looking down over me and one familiar face – my dad! So all of this has just cemented Twickenham as a special place for me and my family.”
The host of the iconic 1995 Rugby World Cup Final, Ellis Park was the second most-popular selection (21%) amongst fans and Wales’ Principality Stadium, with its famous retractable roof, was third with 18%.
The rest of the findings from the Ultimate XV data are available here: https://www.rugbypass.com/rugby-world-cup/ultimate-xv-expert-picks/