Rugby union in Indonesia

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Rugby union in Indonesia
Country Indonesia
Governing body Indonesia Rugby Football Union
National team Indonesia
Clubs 12
National competitions

Rugby union in Indonesia is a moderately popular sport, dating back several decades, and which has experienced fluctuations in its success. There are currently just under six hundred registered players in the country.[1]

Governing body[edit]

The governing body is the Indonesian Rugby Football Union which is a member of World Rugby, and Asian Rugby Football Union.


Rugby was first introduced into the Dutch East Indies, during the colonial period.[2]

In 1983, it was recorded that there were four rugby clubs in the country, namely the International Sports Club (consisting of businessmen) based in Jakarta, another based in Kalimantan (mostly of French origin), another based at Bandung (with a 15 ft rise between the touchlines), and the fourth, bizarrely was based on a US Navy vessel, and its home games were played there.[3] Many of Indonesia's rugby pitches still have unusual distinctions - one is in the heart of the Indonesian jungle, another on a mountain summit, and another in the middle of a tea plantation.[4]

Supposedly the game died out in 1986, after Indonesia had participated in Hong Kong Sevens.[2] However, with the help of a group of Australian, New Zealand and Welsh ex-pats, along with local Indonesians, Malaysians and Singaporeans, the game was revived in 2004.[2]

Although traditionally seen as the province of Commonwealth expatriates, the game has made strides amongst the native population.[5]

As with many other minor rugby nations, the sport is mainly played in and around the capital Jakarta.[5] It is often staged by various multisport clubs.[5]

Today there is an Indonesia national rugby union team and a somewhat successful sevens team, and the game is somewhat more developed, but remains minor. There is also an ongoing schools programme.[2]


  1. ^ IRB Indonesia page, retrieved 1 July 2009
  2. ^ a b c d "Islam and Rugby" on the Rugby Readers review retrieved 2 July 2009
  3. ^ Cotton, Fran (Ed.) (1984) The Book of Rugby Disasters & Bizarre Records. Compiled by Chris Rhys. London. Century Publishing. ISBN 0-7126-0911-3
  4. ^ Cain, Nick & Growden, Greg "Chapter 21: Ten Peculiar Facts about Rugby" in Rugby Union for Dummies (2nd Edition), p295 (pub: John Wiley and Sons, Chichester, England) ISBN 978-0-470-03537-5
  5. ^ a b c Bath, Richard (ed.) The Complete Book of Rugby (Seven Oaks Ltd, 1997 ISBN 1-86200-013-1) p68

External links[edit]