Rugby union in Colombia
|Rugby union in Colombia|
|Governing body||Federacion Colombiana de Rugby|
|First played||Before 1986|
Rugby union in Colombia is a minor but growing sport, with 2,942 registered players and 35 rugby union clubs in Colombia. The Colombian national team is currently[when?] ranked 53rd by the International Rugby Board.
Rugby was first introduced into Colombia from the southern parts of South America, but really started going in the mid 1970s, when British and French expats, along with Colombians who had received rugby training at the Alianza Francesa, played on Sundays in Bogotá. By the 1990s there was a growing number of Colombians engaged in the sport. In 1977 Colombia hosted a visiting team from Ecuador, and in 1978 a Colombian team captained by Brian Perry (veterinarian) from the Bogota Sports Club travelled to Ecuador, playing the international match on a ground near the equator north of the capital Quito.
In Colombia, rugby is not well supported by the government or media, as football (soccer) has a stronger tradition in the country. The Colombian rugby team is called Los Tucanes.
In Bogotá, rugby was pushed by a few players, initially Brian Perry (veterinarian) in the 1970s, then Alfonso Castafaletti and Hywel Jones in the early nineties and then in early 2000s Andrew Wright, Nick Reeves and Andres Tejada who is currently coaching the team with Juan Roman. Hans Rausch was instrumental in helping the game develop in Medellin. Brian Perry (veterinarian) initiated sevens rugby in Bogota in 1977, a challenge at 2,600 metres, and this is now being actively pursued in schools with support from Andrew Wright.
- Colombia on IRB.com
- (Spanish) Federacion Colombiana de Rugby F.C.R.
- Colombia on RugbyData.com
- (French) Archives du Rugby: Colombie