Chile
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s)Los Cóndores (The Condors)
EmblemAndean condor
UnionChilean Rugby Federation
Head coachPablo Lemoine
CaptainMartín Sigren
Most capsCristian Onetto (43)
Top scorerCristian González (221)
Top try scorerJosé Larenas (11)
Home stadiumVarious
First colours
Second colours
World Rugby ranking
Current21 (as of 01 August 2022)
Highest21 (2022)
Lowest30 (2018)
First international
 Chile 0–29 Argentina 
(Valparaíso, Chile; 20 September 1936)
Biggest win
 Chile 102–0 Paraguay 
(Montevideo, Uruguay; 3 May 2003)
Biggest defeat
 Argentina 89–6 Chile 
(Montevideo, Uruguay; 20 May 2009)
World Cup
Appearances1 (First in 2023)
Websitechile.rugby

The Chilean national rugby union team (Spanish: Selección de rugby de Chile) represents Chile in men's international rugby union; it is organised by the Chilean Rugby Federation (Spanish: Federación Chilena de Rugby). Nicknamed Los Cóndores (The Condors in English), they play in red and white jerseys. They are currently ranked 21st in the world by World Rugby, making them the third highest-ranked nation in South America.

Chile was the second South American nation after Argentina to play international rugby union, playing their first international test against Argentina in 1936 in Santiago. Chile is one of the founding members of CONSUR (now known as Sudamérica Rugby) in 1989, alongside Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Chile has long been participating in the South American Rugby Championship since 1951 and has consistently been the third or even the second best team in South America. In 2016, Chile, alongside the unions of Argentina, Brazil, Canada, the United States, and Uruguay, formed the Americas Rugby Championship, aimed at increasing the standard of rugby union in the Americas region.

Chile qualified for the 2023 Rugby World Cup, which will be their first appearance in the tournament; they upset Canada in a two-game series in October 2021, before defeating the United States in a two-game home-and-home series on aggregate by 1 point in July 2022. Chile were drawn with England, Japan, Argentina, and Samoa in Pool D of the World Cup.

The sport has historic connections to the Scottish community in the country. In 2012, two Scottish-Chilean players, Donald and Ian Campbell, were inducted into the IRB (now World Rugby) Hall of Fame.

History

Early history (1890s – 1959)

Rugby was introduced in Chile roughly around the late 19th century, as it was in other parts of South America by British immigrants who arrived in ports.[1] The first recorded rugby game taking place on Chilean soil was in 1894, from British immigrants who lived in both Santiago, Iquique and Valparaíso. Until the 1930s, the game was initially mostly played by the British-descended community of Chile.[2] In 1935, the Chilean Rugby Federation was founded.

Chile's first ever fixtures were against Argentina in September 1936, a two-game series played in the capital Santiago. Chile lost both of their games by scorelines of 0 to 20 and 3 to 31, respectively. Chile would visit Argentina in 1938 in Buenos Aires, losing 3 to 33. Chile would not play another fixture until 1948, where they beat Uruguay 21 to 3 in Buenos Aires.

The Chilean team began competing more consistently in the 1950s. In 1951, Chile played the first South American Rugby Championship against Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina in 1951; Chile finished third, beating Brazil by a margin of 68 to nil, but losing to both Uruguay and Argentina. In 1952, Chile received Ireland on tour, but in Santiago 30 to 0. Chile would play another Five Nations side, this time France on tour, but lost 34–3. In 1958, Chile participated in the second South American Rugby Championship, finishing second; Chile easily beat both Peru and Uruguay before falling to Argentina, finishing second.

1960s – 1980s

By the 1960s Chile saw itself established as a middle contender in South America. Chile were consistently beating sides like Brazil and Uruguay, but couldn't breakthrough against the mighty Argentina. In 1966, Chile received the Springboks, their first test against a SANZAR side, but lost 72 to 0. During the 1970s Chile didn't play any non-South American competition; for the most part Chile were finishing second or third in South America, usually beating Brazil and newcomers Paraguay, and dog fighting for second against Uruguay. In the 1980s, former coach of France Jean-Pierre Juanchich took over administration of rugby in Chile, which led to better promotion, awareness, and improvement in Chilean rugby. In 1989, a proper governing body for rugby in South America, CONSUR, was formed.

1990s – 2000s

Chile formally joined the International Rugby Board in 1991, allowing Chile to participate formally in World Cup competitions. In 1993, Chile participated in its first ever World Cup Qualifying competition in 1993, entering qualifying for the 1995 Rugby World Cup; however, they lost all their fixtures to Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay, finishing bottom of the group. In 1995, Chile played Spain, winning 28 – 23.

The 1999 Rugby World Cup qualifying campaign was more successful. Chile easily swept through a group containing the teams of Bermuda and Trinidad and Tobago. However, Chile lost 14 to 20 against Uruguay, therefore missing out on a repechage spot, and potentially a spot in the World Cup.

In 2000, Chile came within 2 points of defeating Argentina. This improved form would continue through the early 2000s, easily disposing of Brazil in their first qualifier for the 2003 Rugby World Cup. In the final round, a round robin containing Canada, Uruguay, and the United States, the Chileans won their first home fixture versus Uruguay before losing their next two to the US and Canada. Despite this, Chile recorded an upset, defeating the United States 21 to 13 in Santiago. Despite being improved, Chile dropped their next two games, finishing the campaign with 2 wins and 4 losses. Unfortunately for Chile, they finished bottom on try difference, yet again missing out on a repechage spot, and potential qualification.

The 2007 qualifiers were mostly the same song as the previous campaigns; Chile swept their first round against Paraguay and Brazil but in the final group lost both their games to Argentina and Uruguay, which once again would have secured a repechage at least, and potentially an automatic spot in the World Cup.

The 2011 campaign was short-lived, having automatically been seeded into Round 3A of the qualifiers in the new format. Chile cruised to victory versus Brazil but once again lost to familiar foes Uruguay, and once again missing out on a potential repechage or automatic qualifier.

2010–present

In 2010, Chile nearly started the new decade with a bang, coming very close to defeating Oceania powerhouse Tonga, but losing 32–30. The following year in 2011, Chile beat Uruguay for the first time in nine years, winning 21–18 and finishing second in the South American Championship.

The decade has been marked by inconsistency in results. In 2013, Chile began their qualifying campaign, opening up with a victory versus Brazil, but yet again lost to foes Uruguay, following the same pattern of results since the 1999 campaign. In 2014, Chile reached a bottom point; in the 2014 South American Championship, they finished bottom of the group, losing to Brazil for the first time in their history.[citation needed] Chile were also wooden spooners in the 2014 CONSUR Cup, the new competition featuring Argentina and the top 2 sides in South America. However, the following year, Chile won the South American Championship for the first time in their history, cruising through both Brazil and Paraguay before defeating Uruguay at home 30–15.

In 2016, Chile participated in the first Americas Rugby Championship in its current format. Chile squeaked a home win versus Brazil, before playing a close game against Argentina before tiring out in the last 20 minutes, ultimately losing 52–15. Chile were blown out by the United States in Fort Lauderdale 64–0 before nearly beating Uruguay, losing 20–23. Chile lost their last game at home versus Canada, 64–13, finishing bottom in the inaugural edition.

In the 2017 Americas Rugby Championship, Chile was defeated in all five matches, scoring just four tries in the tournament. In the 2017 Cup of Nations, the team claimed a win over Kenya, while losing to Russia and Hong Kong.

In July 2022 Chile qualified for the Rugby World Cup for the first time. They secured their place with an aggregate 52–51 win over the United States, overturning a one-point deficit in the first leg with a 31–29 win in Glendale, Colorado.[3]

Record

Overall record

Top 30 as of 5 September 2022[4]
Rank Change* Team Points
1 Steady  Ireland 090.03
2 Steady  France 089.41
3 Steady  South Africa 087.89
4 Increase1  New Zealand 086.41
5 Decrease1  England 086.25
6 Increase1  Argentina 082.23
7 Increase1  Scotland 081.93
8 Decrease2  Australia 081.54
9 Steady  Wales 081.28
10 Steady  Japan 077.74
11 Steady  Samoa 075.75
12 Steady  Fiji 075.08
13 Steady  Georgia 074.51
14 Steady  Italy 073.29
15 Steady  Spain 069.27
16 Steady  Tonga 067.79
17 Steady  Romania 066.33
18 Steady  Uruguay 065.97
19 Steady  United States 065.17
20 Steady  Portugal 065.08
21 Steady  Chile 061.24
22 Steady  Hong Kong 061.03
23 Steady  Canada 060.99
24 Steady  Namibia 060.56
25 Steady  Russia 058.06
26 Steady  Belgium 055.97
27 Increase1  Brazil 055.23
28 Decrease1  Netherlands 053.69
29 Steady  Poland 053.03
30 Steady  Germany 052.79
* Change from the previous week

Below is a table of the representative rugby matches played by a Chile national XV at test level up until 26 November 2021.

Opponent Played Won Lost Drawn Win % For Aga Diff
 Argentina 39 0 39 0 0.00% 270 1855 −1585
 Argentina XV 5 1 4 0 20.00% 78 175 −97
 Argentina Jaguars 1 0 1 0 0.00% 23 42 −19
 Bermuda 1 1 0 0 100.00% 65 8 +57
 Brazil 28 22 4 2 78.57% 893 337 +556
 Canada 9 1 7 0 11.11% 137 313 −176
 Fiji 1 0 1 0 0.00% 16 41 −25
 France Amateur 1 0 1 0 0.00% 3 22 −19
 France XV 1 0 1 0 0.00% 3 34 −31
 Georgia 2 1 1 0 50.00% 36 53 −17
 Germany 1 1 0 0 100.00% 32 10 +22
 Hong Kong 1 0 1 0 0.00% 6 13 −7
 Kenya 1 1 0 0 100.00% 23 3 +20
 Paraguay 27 26 1 0 96.30% 1098 276 +822
 Peru 2 2 0 0 100.00% 62 6 +56
 Portugal 4 0 4 0 0.00% 67 110 −43
 Romania 1 0 1 0 0.00% 11 27 −16
 Russia 3 2 1 0 66.66% 83 98 −15
 Scotland A 1 0 1 0 0.00% 5 45 −40
 Spain 5 2 3 0 40.00% 86 151 −65
 South Korea 2 1 1 0 50.00% 66 50 +16
 Tonga 1 0 1 0 0.00% 30 32 −2
 Trinidad and Tobago 1 1 0 0 100.00% 35 6 +29
 United States 8 2 6 0 25.00% 125 336 −211
 Uruguay 54 12 41 1 22.22% 814 1279 −465
 Venezuela 1 1 0 0 100.00% 95 3 +92
Total 192 74 115 3 39.15% 4000 5065 −1065

World Cup record

World Cup record World Cup Qualification record
Year Round P W D L F A P W D L F A
AustraliaNew Zealand 1987 Not invited -
United KingdomRepublic of IrelandFrance 1991 Did not enter Did not enter
South Africa 1995 Did not qualify 3 0 0 3 37 109
Wales 1999 Did not qualify 4 3 0 1 168 40
Australia 2003 Did not qualify 8 4 0 4 196 155
France 2007 Did not qualify 4 2 0 2 121 138
New Zealand 2011 Did not qualify 2 1 0 1 88 49
England 2015 Did not qualify 4 2 0 2 92 78
Japan 2019 Did not qualify 6 3 1 2 194 110
France 2023 Qualified 6 3 0 3 139 125
Total 1/10 0 0 0 0 0 0 37 18 1 18 1035 804

South American Rugby Championship record

Main article: South American Rugby Championship

Sudamérica Rugby Cup/CONSUR Cup record

Americas Rugby Championship record

Players

Current squad

On 6 June, the following 32 players were called up to face Scotland A in a World Rugby test match as well as the United States in the 2023 Rugby World Cup Americas 2 qualifier play-offs.[5]

Head Coach: Uruguay Pablo Lemoine

Player Position Date of birth (age) Caps Club/province
Augusto Böhme Hooker (1997-06-11) 11 June 1997 (age 25) 16 United States Dallas Jackals
Tomás Dussaillant Hooker (1990-10-06) 6 October 1990 (age 31) 34 Chile Selknam
Diego Escobar Hooker (2000-04-17) 17 April 2000 (age 22) 0 Chile Selknam
Javier Carrasco Prop (1997-08-24) 24 August 1997 (age 25) 13 Chile Selknam
Matías Dittus Prop (1993-07-16) 16 July 1993 (age 29) 15 France Périgueux
Iñaki Gurruchaga Prop (1995-10-13) 13 October 1995 (age 26) 6 Chile Selknam
Vittorio Lastra Prop (1996-03-26) 26 March 1996 (age 26) 20 Chile Selknam
Salvador Lues Prop (1999-11-06) 6 November 1999 (age 22) 6 Chile Selknam
Sebastián Otero Prop (1996-02-20) 20 February 1996 (age 26) 8 Chile Selknam
Javier Eissmann Lock (1997-03-21) 21 March 1997 (age 25) 15 Chile Selknam
Santiago Pedrero Lock (2000-11-30) 30 November 2000 (age 21) 1 Chile Selknam
Clemente Saavedra Lock (1997-12-15) 15 December 1997 (age 24) 14 Spain Santboiana
Augusto Sarmiento Lock (1993-04-26) 26 April 1993 (age 29) 13 Chile Selknam
Santiago Edwards Back row (1997-08-26) 26 August 1997 (age 25) 0 Chile Selknam
Alfonso Escobar Back row (1997-08-17) 17 August 1997 (age 25) 14 Chile Selknam
Raimundo Martínez Back row (1999-11-25) 25 November 1999 (age 22) 5 Chile Selknam
Thomas Orchard Back row (1997-01-12) 12 January 1997 (age 25) 11 Chile Selknam
Martín Sigren (c) Back row (1996-05-14) 14 May 1996 (age 26) 22 Chile Selknam
Ignacio Silva Back row (1989-02-16) 16 February 1989 (age 33) 34 Chile Selknam
Lukas Carvallo Scrum-half (2001-07-06) 6 July 2001 (age 21) 1 Chile Selknam
Nicolás Herreros Scrum-half (1990-01-23) 23 January 1990 (age 32) 5 Spain Aparejadores
Marcelo Torrealba Scrum-half (1996-05-06) 6 May 1996 (age 26) 5 Chile Selknam
Benjamín Videla Scrum-half (2001-04-24) 24 April 2001 (age 21) 0 Chile Selknam
Rodrigo Fernández Fly-half (1996-02-08) 8 February 1996 (age 26) 17 Chile Selknam
Iñaki Ayarza Centre (1999-09-07) 7 September 1999 (age 22) 9 France Charente
Matías Garafulic Centre (2000-09-01) 1 September 2000 (age 22) 5 Chile Selknam
José Larenas Centre (1989-09-14) 14 September 1989 (age 32) 42 Chile Selknam
Pablo Casas Wing (1992-03-04) 4 March 1992 (age 30) 10 Portugal Lousã
Nicolás Garafulic Wing (1998-09-11) 11 September 1998 (age 23) 15 Chile Selknam
Franco Velarde Wing (1994-11-04) 4 November 1994 (age 27) 15 Spain El Salvador
Francisco Urroz Fullback (1993-09-07) 7 September 1993 (age 28) 10 Chile Selknam
Santiago Videla Fullback (1998-01-16) 16 January 1998 (age 24) 19 Chile Selknam

Notable players

Past coaches

Since the 1999 Rugby World Cup

Years Coach
2002–2006 Argentina Jorge Navesi
2007 Chile Cristian Iga
2007 Argentina Gonzolo Balbontin
2008–2012 Argentina Daniel Graco
2012–2014 Argentina Omar Turcumán
2014–2015 Australia Paul Healy
2016 Chile Elías Santillán
2016–2017 France Bernard Charreyre
2017 Argentina Omar Turcuman
2017–2018 New Zealand Mark Cross
2018–present Uruguay Pablo Lemoine

See also

References

  1. ^ Bath, Richard (ed.) The Complete Book of Rugby (Seven Oaks Ltd, 1997 ISBN 1-86200-013-1) p65
  2. ^ Collins, Tony (1 September 2015). The Oval World: A Global History of Rugby (First ed.). Bloomsbury Publishing. ISBN 9781408843703.
  3. ^ Pengelly, Martin (17 July 2022). "Chile upset USA in Colorado to secure first ever Rugby World Cup place". The Guardian. Retrieved 18 July 2022.
  4. ^ "Men's World Rankings". World Rugby. Retrieved 5 September 2022.
  5. ^ CAMP CÓNDORES: EL SELECCIONADO SE INSTALA EN ANTOFAGASTA