Playing their first ever match against England in 1874, rugby union has been an integral part of Irish sporting history. As a nation they have produced great players such as: Willie John McBride, Paul O’Connell, Brian O’Driscoll and Mike Gibson.
Ireland compete annually in the Natwest Six Nations and Canterbury are delighted to partner this great rugby nation. Canterbury and the IRFU hold a similar interest and that is putting the player first, whether it’s through safety or innovation, the sport and players are the most important aspect of the game.
Canterbury understands the impeccable standards that Irish rugby has and strives to exceed these on a regular basis.
Founded in 1865 Bath is one of the oldest and most successful clubs in the English Premiership. They play in their iconic kit at The Rec, which has been subject to some emphatic wins over the years. In the 2014/2015 season Mike Ford and his son George won The Director of Rugby Award and Premiership Player of the season respectively, as well as Bath reaching the Premiership final, an achievement Bath and Canterbury alike are extremely proud of.
Founded in 1879, Leinster Rugby has a long and distinguished history both in Ireland and internationally, having won the Celtic League, Magners League and European Rugby Champions Cup. Success on the field through honesty in performance has helped tie the bonds between the players who wear the famous blue jersey and their supporters.
The club’s past is filled with unforgettable fixtures such as 'The Last Stand' (the last competitive match to be played in the old Lansdowne Road against Ulster), the thrilling 33-22 victory over Northampton Saints in the 2011 Heineken Cup Final and the 2009 Heineken Cup semi-final victory over Munster at Croke Park. The latter was the largest ever club attendance at the time and helped cement the team's standing in the hearts of its loyal support. Leinster continue to prove themselves as one of the top forces in European club rugby and Canterbury is proud to support them on their journey.
Rugby has been thriving in Japan for over a century and the Japan Rugby Football Union (JRFU) has been leading this Game and supporting the core values of Rugby for almost 90 years. Since 1899, Rugby has grown rapidly both on and off the pitch. Japan Rugby Football Union is the host nation for the Rugby World Cup 2019 which will represent the first ever Rugby World Cup in Asia, and today, the Japan National Team (often known as the Cherry Blossoms or more recently the Brave Blossoms) competes annually in the Asian Five Nations and the Pacific Nations Cup. Japan’s success on the pitch however has been mixed. Despite having participated in every Rugby World Cup since the tournament began in 1987, the Cheery Blossoms only ever won one game at the tournament; against Zimbabwe in 1991.
Despite their lack of success at the World Cup, notable victories for Japan include triumph over the Junior All Blacks in 1968, a 28–24 win over Scotland in 1989 and most recently, Japan won the 2011 IRB Pacific Nations Cup.
Vodafone Warriors compete in the National Rugby League (NRL) premiership and are the league's only team from outside Australia.
Founded in 1995 as the Auckland Warriors, the team over the past seventeen seasons have seen both their fair share of success and failure. The Warriors have claimed one minor premiership (200), reached two Grand Finals(2002 and 2011), reached the play-offs 7 times, and provided the majority of the New Zealand national team's players.
Canterbury of New Zealand wish the side all the best in the seasons to come and are proud to be part of the club's history and future.