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Rugby Union - National Team Nicknames

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Nicknames of teams which have represented their country at the Rugby World Cup

22 facts:

Argentina
   team is known as   
The Pumas
The Pumas nickname is generally believed to be the result of an error made by a journalist who followed the team during their first overseas tour ever — to Southern Africa in 1965. Reporters were trying to devise a catchy nickname for the team similar to existing international team nicknames such as All Blacks, Springboks, and Wallabies. One of them saw the picture of an animal on the UAR crest; however, he thought it was a puma instead of the actual jaguar. The mistake stuck, and was eventually adopted by the Argentines themselves (although the UAR crest still depicts a jaguar).
Australia
   team is known as   
The Wallabies
Named for their emblem
Canada
   team is known as   
Canucks
Named for a slang term for Canadians
Canada
   team is known as   
Maple Leafs
Named for their emblem and national symbol
Côte D'Ivoire
   team is known as   
Les Éléphants
French for 'The Elephants'
England
   team is known as   
The Red and Whites
Not a commonly used name. It arises from the red and white playing strip.
France
   team is known as   
Les Bleus
(the Blues) So-called because of the blue shirts they play in. They currently wear an all-navy blue Nike kit which was released for the 2007 Rugby World Cup.
France
   team is known as   
Les Tricolores
Named for their playing strip which used to be blue shirts, white shorts and red socks, based on the colours of the French flag. The French emblem is a golden rooster imposed upon a red crest and so French players are sometimes referred to as Les Coqs.
Georgia
   team is known as   
The Lelos
The team's nickname, The Lelos, comes from lelo, an indigenous Georgian sport with strong similarities to rugby. Lelo has been adopted as the Georgian word for "try". One standard cheer of Georgian rugby union fans is Lelo, Lelo, Sakartvelo (Try, Try, Georgia).
Italy
   team is known as   
Azzurri
(the Blues) So-called because of the blue shirts they play in.
Japan
   team is known as   
The Brave Blossoms
Named for their emblem. previously the 'Cherry Blossoms'.
Namibia
   team is known as   
The Welwitschias
A plant which is considered a living fossil and features on the country's coat of arms. The team is aka Biltongboere.
New Zealand
   team is known as   
The All Blacks
Named for their playing strip. Early New Zealand national rugby uniforms consisted of a black jersey with a silver fern and white knickerbockers. By their 1905 tour New Zealand were wearing all black, except for the silver fern, and their All Black name dates from this time.
Portugal
   team is known as   
Os Lobos
The Wolves
Romania
   team is known as   
The Oaks
Named for their emblem.
Samoa (Western Samoa)
   team is known as   
Manu Samoa
Manu Samoa' is the name of a famous Samoan chief some 10 generations ago.
South Africa
   team is known as   
The Springboks
Or just the Boks. Named for their emblem - the springbok.
Spain
   team is known as   
El XV Del León
Named for their emblem.
Tonga
   team is known as   
Ikale Tahi
Sea Eagles
Uruguay
   team is known as   
Los Teros
Named for their emblem.
The U.S.A.
   team is known as   
The Eagles
Named for their emblem and national symbol
Zimbabwe
   team is known as   
The Sables


Facts contributed by:


JMK








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