SC 1880 Frankfurt
|Full name||Sport-Club Frankfurt 1880 e.V.|
|Union||German Rugby Federation|
|Location||Frankfurt am Main, Germany|
|Ground(s)||Sportanlage an der Feldgerichtstrasse|
|Chairman||Uwe H.H. Benecke|
|2015–16||Rugby-Bundesliga South/West, 6th|
The SC 1880 Frankfurt is a German rugby union club from Frankfurt am Main, currently playing in the Rugby-Bundesliga. Apart from rugby, the club also offers other sports like lacrosse, tennis and field hockey.
The club was, for a time, one of only two professional rugby clubs in Germany, the other being Heidelberger RK. The turn to professionalism in a sport otherwise fully amateur in Germany was made possible through the support of Uli Byszio, who owns a gold- and silver trading business. The club became an amateur side once more after the 2012–13 season.
The SC 1880 was formed in 1880 as a rugby club through the merger of two local rugby sides, Germania and Franconia. It was formed as FC 1880 Frankfurt as a distinction between rugby and football was not made in Germany at that time.
Rugby quickly gained in popularity at that time and Frankfurt became the first German team to travel to England, playing the Blackheath Football Club in 1894. Blackheath awarded the club the right to adopt its club colours of red and black, which are still the colours SC 1880 plays in today. In 1905, a field hockey département was established, and in 1914 the club changed its name to the current SC 1880 Frankfurt. Before that, in 1910, the club won its first national rugby title, winning the second edition of the German rugby union championship. In 1913, it repeated this achievement. The club also represented Germany at the 1900 World Expo in Paris, which was part of the rugby tournament of the 1900 Summer Olympics. The club thereby achieved Germany's only rugby medal at Olympic games to date.
In 1922–23, the club moved to its current home ground. In this era, two more national titles followed, in 1922 and 1925. In 1926 and 1931, the SC 1880 reached the final but lost. Before and after the war, the club played regular friendlies with the Oxford Greyhounds and after the Second World War the club travelled to Oxford in 1951 and had the English team return the visit in 1953.
Success on the rugby field was limited after this and a losing appearances in the 1952 and 1969 finals was all it had to show for.
With the establishment of the Rugby-Bundesliga in 1971, SC 1880 seems to have lost completely in importance and the new millennium found the club as a struggling second division outfit, having been relegated from the Rugby-Bundesliga in 1999. After suffering relegation from the second division in 2004, the club quickly rebounded and returned to this level the season after. With the help of foreign players and coaches, the fortunes of the club turned after this. A large part of the success of the club hails from the financial support of Uli Byszio, a former player, who led the way in professionalising the club.
Upon return to the Bundesliga, the club performed impressively, finishing the 2006–07 season with twelve wins, one draw and one loss on top of the table. In the final however, played at home, the team slipped up and lost to the RG Heidelberg 15–23.
The following season, 2007–08, the team finished on top again and this time it fared better in the final, beating RG Heidelberg 28–13 to win its fifth German title and its first in 83 years, having last won it in 1925. With Villiame Gadolo, the club had a player with rugby world cup experience in its ranks. Due to the large number of New Zealanders in the side, the team actually performed the Haka before the match.
Shortly before winning the title, coach George Simpkin left the club and was replaced by Phil "Lofty" Stevenson, who was also, at the time, Germanys sevens coach. The team nevertheless continued in 2008–09 as it had finished the previous season, dominating the league and finishing on top, with 14 wins and two losses, while its reserve side won the 2nd Bundesliga South/West title. The senior team then moved on to beat Berliner Rugby Club in the semi-finals of the German championship, to reach the national title game against Heidelberger RK. An 11–8 victory over HRK earned the club its sixth German championship.
Throughout its history, the SC 1880 provided 36 players to the German national rugby union team who won 142 caps between them. In 2008, the club had players from more than 20 different nations in its ranks and its first three teams play at first, second and third level in the German league system. While the club only provided one player to the German team in 2008, Rolf Wacha, it was expected that Frankfurt's professional approach to rugby was going to improve this situation; great progress has been made in the youth département of the club in this regard. The club's concept envisions that by 2014 the whole first team will hail from the youth département and replace the need for foreign top-players.
In the 2009–10 season, Frankfurt took out the minor premiership once more, for a fourth time in a row, but lost the final in extra time to Heidelberger RK. The following year, Frankfurt reached the final for a fifth consecutive time but lost 9–12. After two lost finals in a row, the club decided to replace its coach, with Sam Alatini taking over from Aaron Satchwell for 2011–12, a move that proved unsuccessful with Frankfurt losing in the semi-finals at home to newly promoted TV Pforzheim.
In 2011–12, the club also took part in the North Sea Cup, a European Cup competition made up of two clubs each from Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands. While unsuccessful at national level the club did win the North Sea Cup with a 26–19 victory over Heidelberger RK.
SC 1880 finished first in their group in the 2012–13 season and qualified for the south/west division of the championship round, where it also came fifth. The club was knocked out in the quarter finals of the play-offs after a 7–49 loss to Heidelberger RK. At the end of the season, the club opted to return to an amateur side, thereby being forced to withdraw its reserve team from the 2nd Bundesliga to the 3rd Liga because of a reduction of the size of the playing squad. Previously, the club's reserve side had played for many years in the 2nd Bundesliga South/West, where it has won the league championship in 2009 and 2012.
SC 1880 was less competitive in 2013–14 and 2014–15 then it had been in the recent past, finishing only seventh in each season the championship round and missing out on the play-off altogether. In the 2015-2016 season this improved to 6th position and also included a run to the semifinal of the DRV Pokal where they were defeated 10-21 by TSV Handshusheim. Carrying this momentum into the upcoming 2016-2017 season the club are optimistic that they will be in a position to challenge for silverware again at the end season.
The 2015-2016 season was overall an outstanding season for the SC1880 rugby club in general due to the performances from the age group teams winning what departing head of rugby Tim Matawatu named "The Grand Slam". The U12, U14, U16 and U18 were all crowned German Champions this season which is unprecedented in German rugby and means the future of ruby at SC1880 looks very bright.
Note: Flags indicate national union as has been defined under WR eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-WR nationality.
The club's honours:
- German rugby union championship
- Champions: 1910, 1913, 1922, 1925, 2008, 2009
- Runners up: 1920, 1926, 1931, 1952, 1969, 2007, 2010, 2011
- German rugby union cup
- Winner: 2007, 2009, 2010
- Runners up: 2011
- German sevens championship
- Champions: 2007, 2010
- Runners up: 2008
- 2nd Rugby-Bundesliga
- Champions: 2006, 2009‡, 2012‡
- Division champions: 2006, 2009‡, 2012‡
- North Sea Cup
- Winner: 2012
- ‡ Denotes won by reserve team.
Recent seasons of the club:
|Bundesliga qualification round||6th|
|1999–2000||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West (II)||6th|
|2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West qualification round||3rd|
|2000–01||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West||5th|
|2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West qualification round||2nd|
|2001–02||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West||4th|
|2002–03||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West||6th|
|2003–04||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West||8th — Relegated|
|2004–05||Rugby-Regionalliga Hesse (III)||Promoted|
|2005–06||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West (II)||1st — Promoted|
|2006–07||Rugby-Bundesliga (I)||1st — Runners up|
|2007–08||Rugby-Bundesliga||1st — Champions|
|2008–09||Rugby-Bundesliga||1st — Champions|
|2009–10||Rugby-Bundesliga||1st — Runners up|
|2010–11||Rugby-Bundesliga||2nd — Runners up|
|2011–12||Rugby-Bundesliga||2nd — Semi-finals|
|2012–13||Rugby-Bundesliga qualification round – West||1st|
|Rugby-Bundesliga championship round – South-West||5th — Quarter finals|
|2013–14||Rugby-Bundesliga qualification round – West||2nd|
|Rugby-Bundesliga championship round – South-West||7th|
|2014–15||Rugby-Bundesliga qualification round – West||2nd|
|Rugby-Bundesliga championship round – South-West||7th|
- Until 2001, when the single-division Bundesliga was established, the season was divided in autumn and spring, a Vorrunde and Endrunde, whereby the top teams of the Rugby-Bundesliga would play out the championship while the bottom teams together with the autumn 2nd Bundesliga champion would play for Bundesliga qualification. The remainder of the 2nd Bundesliga teams would play a spring round to determine the relegated clubs. Where two placing's are shown, the first is autumn, the second spring. In 2012 the Bundesliga was expanded from ten to 24 teams and the 2nd Bundesliga from 20 to 24 with the leagues divided into four regional divisions.
|2001–02||Rugby-Regionalliga Hesse (III)||3rd|
|2005–06||Rugby-Regionalliga Hesse||1st — Promoted|
|2006–07||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West (II)||3rd|
|2007–08||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West||4th|
|2008–09||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West||1st|
|2009–10||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West||5th|
|2010–11||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West||7th|
|2011–12||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga South/West||1st|
|2012–13||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga qualification round – West||6th|
|Liga-Pokal – South-West||8th — Round of sixteen|
|2013–14||3rd Liga South/West — West division||5th|
|2014–15||3rd Liga South/West||7th|
|2015–16||3rd Liga South/West—South||3rd|
In the 2008–10 campaign, Wacha appeared for 80 and Germany again, while Benjamin Brierley, Jamie Houston, Daniel Preussner, Alexander Hauck and Mark Sztyndera were new additions to the club's list of internationals.
For the opening match of the 2012–14 edition of the ENC against the Ukraine the club had only Kieran Manawatu selected for the team.
The club had no player selected for the German under-18 team at the 2009 European Under-18 Rugby Union Championship, but three for the 2010 tournament, Lukas Deichmann, Jens Listmann and Adam Howes.
Recent coaches of the club:
|Lofty Stevenson||– 2009|
|Aaron Satchwell||2009 – 2011|
|Sam Alatini||2011 – 2012|
|Daniel Cünzer||2012 – 2015|
|Karl Savimaki||2015 – Present|
- Getränke-Hersteller gegen Gold-Händler (in German) Offenbach-Post, published: 28 May 2011. accessed: 21 August 2011
- 2. BL: Auch der SC Frankfurt 1880 II zieht zurück (in German) totalrugby.de, published: 11 July 2013, accessed: 16 July 2013
- Geschichte/Chronik (in German) SC 1880 website, accessed: 11 January 2009
- German rugby history rugbynetwork.net, accessed: 11 January 2009
- Rugby im 80 (in German) SC 1880 website, accessed: 11 January 2009
- Die Gründerjahre des deutschen Rugbysports (in German) DRV website - Foundation years, accessed: 25 February 2010
- Das Hoffenheim des Rugby (in German) Frankfurter Allgemeine online — Article on the club's youth program, accessed: 11 january 2009
- 2. Bundesliga Süd — 2005–06 Rugbyweb.de — results and tables of German rugby, accessed: 11 January 2009
- SC 1880 Frankfurt vs. RG Heidelberg (in German) 2008 final preview, accessed: 29 December 2008
- Haka Rugby Final 2008 beginning Youtube — Haka at the 2008 German final, accessed: 11 January 2009
- Der Trainer-Guru (in German) Frankfurter Allgemeine online — Article on George Simpkin, accessed: 11 January 2009
- Huge backing for Hanover Sevens showpiece IRB website, accessed: 11 January 2009
- SC 1880 Frankfurt vs. RG Heidelberg (in German) totalrugby.de — 2008 final preview, accessed: 11 January 2009
- Gewinner: SC Frankfurt 1880 (in German) DOSB website — article on SC 1880s youth departement, accessed: 11 January 2009
- TotalRugby Wechselbörse 2011/2012 (in German) totalrugby.de, accessed: 21 August 2011
- Rugby-Bundesliga 2011-12 (in German) rugbyweb.de, accessed: 3 May 2012
- North Sea Cup (in German) www.rugbyweb.de, accessed: 21 August 2011
- SC Frankfurt 1880 gewinnt North Sea Cup Finale gegen HRK (in German) totalrugby.de, published: 17 May 2012, accessed: 23 August 2012
- RugbyWeb Ergebnisarchiv (in German) rugbyweb.de - Results archive, accessed: 24 July 2012
- DRV XV: Kader für EM-Auftakt gegen Ukraine fast komplett (in German) totalrugby.de, published: 16 October 2012, accessed: 17 October 2012
- U18-EM: Deutschland feiert klaren Auftaktsieg (in German) Rugby-Journal - 2009 squad, published: 4 April 2009, accessed: 30 April 2010
- U18 in Bestbesetzung zur EM nach Italien (in German) totalrugby.de, published: 23 March 2010, accessed: 30 April 2010