TSV Victoria Linden
|Full name||Turn und Sportverein Victoria Linden e.V.|
|Union||German Rugby Federation|
|2015–16||1. Rugby-Bundesliga North|
The TSV Victoria Linden is a German rugby union club from the Linden suburb of Hannover, currently playing in the Rugby-Bundesliga. Apart from rugby, the club also offers other sports, such as triathlon and athletics.
The club is Germany's record rugby union champion, with 20 titles.
Victoria was formed in 1900, in Hannover, one of the centres of German rugby.
The club had little success before the First World War and could only earn one national championship between the wars, in 1929. Two losing finals came before that, in 1924 and 1927.
After its title, Victoria continued its undistinguished run until after the Second World War, when it became Germany's most successful club.
The club took out its second title in what was the first German championship after the war, in 1948. It didn't lose in any of its following nine finals appearances, achieving six championships in a row from 1951 to 1956. The club could not quite continue in this dominance but was successful nevertheless.
From 1976 to 1984, it had a less successful spell, a cup win in 1982 being the only title it won.
From 1987 onwards, Victoria returned to former glory, reaching eleven championship finals in fourteen years until the turn of the millennium.
Linden noticeably declined from then on, unable to finish in the league's top-four after 2001. With the establishment of a single-division Bundesliga that year, the competition had become stronger owing to the top clubs from the south and the north now playing in the same league instead of only meeting in the championship rounds.
The club suffered a bitter relegation in 2006, having to step down to the 2nd Bundesliga North/East after finishing last in the Bundesliga.
In the 2008-09 season, Victoria finished in second spot once more, fifteen points behind DSV 78/08 Ricklingen. Victoria who only won the 2009-10 North/East division in the last round of the championship, declined promotion to the Rugby-Bundesliga, citing the additional cost of travelling and the limited player pool as their reason. The South/West champion, Stuttgarter RC, has also indicated that it would probably not take up promotion, leaving the Bundesliga briefly with the possibility of only eight clubs and none from hanover for the next season. DSV 78 however was permitted to remain in the league and Victoria took out another division championship in 2011, but again declined promotion.
A league reform in 2012 allowed the club promotion to the Bundesliga as the league was expanded from ten to 24 teams. Victoria finished fourth in their group in the 2012-13 season and qualified for the north/east division of the championship round, where it came seventh. The club opted to not play their first round play-off match, citing player shortage, and was thereby knocked out of the championship with the game awarded 50-0 to the opposition.
In 2013–14 the team qualified for the championship and the play-offs once more, losing 101–10 to RG Heidelberg in the first round. In the 2014–15 season the club finished third in the north-east DRV-Pokal group but was knocked out of the first round of the play-offs after a 17–10 loss to StuSta München. With the reduction of the Bundesliga from 24 to 18 teams Victoria was relegated at the end of the 2014–15 season but promoted again in the followings season.
- German rugby union championship
- Champions: 1929, 1948, 1951–56, 1958, 1962, 1965, 1969, 1972, 1975, 1987, 1989, 1992–94, 1996
- Runners up: 1924, 1927, 1967, 1976, 1984, 1991, 1995, 1997, 1998, 2000
- German rugby union cup
- Winner: 1965, 1966, 1982, 1989, 1991–93
- Runners up: 1962-64, 1969, 1971, 1972, 1976, 1985, 1994
- German sevens championship
- Champions: 2000
- 2nd Rugby-Bundesliga North/East
- Champions: 2010, 2011
- Runners up: 2008, 2009
Recent seasons of the club:
|1997-98||Rugby-Bundesliga (I)||1st — Runners up|
|Bundesliga championship round||5th|
|Bundesliga championship round||2nd — Runners up|
|Bundesliga championship round||5th|
|2005-06||Rugby-Bundesliga||8th — Relegated|
|2006-07||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga North/East (II)||4th|
|2007-08||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga North/East||2nd|
|2008-09||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga North/East||2nd|
|2009–10||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga North/East||1st|
|2010–11||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga North/East||1st|
|2011–12||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga North/East||6th — Promoted|
|2012–13||Rugby-Bundesliga qualification round – North||4th|
|Rugby-Bundesliga championship round – North-East||7th — Round of sixteen|
|2013–14||Rugby-Bundesliga qualification round – North||4th|
|Rugby-Bundesliga championship round – North-East||6th — First round|
|2014–15||Rugby-Bundesliga qualification round – North||5th|
|DRV-Pokal – North-East||3rd – First round – Relegated|
|2015–16||2nd Rugby-Bundesliga North||1st – Promoted|
- 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.
- DER VEREIN (German) Victoria Linden website, accessed: 25 January 2009
- Victoria Linden verzichtet auf den Bundesligaaufstieg (German), totalrugby.de, published: 27 May 2010, accessed: 29 May 2010
- Bundesliga-Achtelfinals: Spielabsagen in Meisterrunde und DRV-Pokal (German) totalrugby.de, published: 2 May 2013, accessed: 5 May 2013
- RugbyWeb Ergebnisarchiv (German) rugbyweb.de - Results archive, accessed: 24 July 2012
- U18-EM: Deutschland feiert klaren Auftaktsieg (German) Rugby-Journal - 2009 squad, published: 4 April 2009, accessed: 30 April 2010
- U18 in Bestbesetzung zur EM nach Italien (German) totalrugby.de, published: 23 March 2010, accessed: 30 April 2010