Rugby League World Cup

The Rugby League World Cup is an international competition for national men’s rugby league teams, first held in 1954 and was the first World Cup for either code of rugby.

There have been 15 editions of the tournament, with just three different winners – Australia are by the most successful team having won 11 times, followed by Great Britain with three wins and New Zealand with one win.

The current holders are Australia who won the 2017 edition, having beaten England 6 – 0 in the Final on home soil at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.


When is the Rugby League World Cup?

The tournament has been held at intervals of 2 to 8 years but since 2013 will consistently by held every 4 years.

The 16th Rugby League World Cup is scheduled for Friday 23rd October to Friday 27th November 2021.


Where is the Rugby League World Cup?

Eight teams have hosted or co-hosted the World Cup. Previous hosts of the tournament are:

  • 1954 – France
  • 1957 – Australia
  • 1960 – England
  • 1968 – Australia and New Zealand
  • 1970 – England
  • 1972 – France
  • 1975 – International
  • 1977 – Australia and New Zealand
  • 1985-1988 – International
  • 1989-1992 – International
  • 1995 – England and Wales
  • 2000 – United Kingdom, Ireland and France
  • 2008 – Australia
  • 2013 – England, Wales, France and Ireland
  • 2017 – Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea

The 2021 Rugby League World Cup is being hosted in England for the sixth time at the following venues:


Who is competing in the Rugby League World Cup?

16 teams compete in the World Cup, with the host team qualifying automatically. The tournament was initially played as a four team, gradually expanding across the years to five, 10, 14 and then 16 teams.

For the 2021 tournament, England qualified automatically as hosts as did the other seven quarter-finalists from the 2017 tournament. The remaining places were determined by qualifying events in the Americas (1 place), Europe (6 places) and 1 place from an intercontinental play-off. The 16 teams competing are:

Group A – England, Samoa, France, Greece

Group B – Australia, Fiji, Scotland, Italy

Group C – New Zealand, Lebanon, Jamaica, Ireland

Group D – Tonga, Papua New Guinea, Wales, Cook Islands


How do I get tickets to the Rugby League World Cup?

Tickets for the 2021 Rugby League World Cup are due to be released in late 2020. Further information will be posted on the official website here.


Further Information

Rugby League World Cup Official Website

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