The Rugby World Cup is the premier international rugby union competition.
The event is organised by the International Rugby Board (IRB) and is
contested by national teams. The winners are awarded the William Webb
Ellis Cup. William Webb Ellis was the Rugby School pupil who - according
to popular myth - invented the game after picking up the ball during a
game of football.
The inaugural tournament was held in 1987,
hosted by both Australia and New Zealand and was contested between sixteen
nations. The All Blacks (New Zealand) became the first ever champions,
defeating France twenty-nine points to nine.
The subsequent 1991
tournament, which this issue commemorates, was hosted by England, with
matches also being played throughout the rest of Britain, Ireland and
France. Australia won the second tournament, defeating England, twelve
points to six.
The tournament is contested every four years and is
one of the largest international sporting competitions in the
A miniature sheet containing the $1.80 stamp was issued
with a 60 cent surcharge over face value donated to raise funds to help
support hobby sport in New Zealand. The miniature sheet was also issued
for the Philanippon '91 exhibition with the exhibition logo in the top
right hand corner. This miniature sheet is listed under 1991 Philanippon
in this catalogue.