The top 20 memorable Rugby World Cup moments of all time

The most memorable Rugby World Cup moment of all time is Jonny Wilkinson’s drop goal winner in the last seconds of the final in 2003, according to a poll.

Jonah Lomu steamrolling England with four tries in 1995 came second in the vote by 1,500 fans, followed by England’s reaction to the All Black’s haka in 2019.

Japan shocking the world by beating South Africa in 2015, and Nelson Mandela handing Francois Pienaar the Webb Ellis cup back in 1995 rounded out the top five.

The research found 81 percent plan on tuning in to this year’s World Cup – with just 15 percent predicting England to come out on top.

The research was commissioned by ahead of the start of the Rugby World Cup.

Its spokesperson said: “The Rugby World Cup has had its share of memorable moments down the years.

“Our research shows just how far back its history now goes, with many of the top moments harking back to the early 90s, not long after the tournament was created.

“But it’s no surprise – and totally deserved – that Jonny’s iconic drop goal is what’s come out on top.

“We’d bet that even to this day, he doesn’t have to buy a pint for himself in any rugby club across the country.”

New Zealand were deemed the side most likely to win this year’s tournament, with 27 percent of the vote.

South Africa were only fourth-favourite, coming behind England and France, with Ireland deemed fifth most likely to triumph.

However, 73 percent believe France being the host nation will give them an advantage over the other sides.

The hosts’ fightback against New Zealand in 1999 also appeared in the top 20 list of iconic World Cup moments.

Nearly a tenth (nine percent) cast their minds back to the moment Western Samoa shocked Wales in 1991.

And 84 percent are hopeful of seeing some more iconic moments this time around, according to the data.

The study also found most rugby fans are far more passionate about international games than club matches (50 percent compared to 11 percent).

However, exactly six in 10 confess to being something of a ‘fair-weather’ rugby fan – only paying attention during big tournaments.

Lottoland’s spokesperson added: “The great thing about a big tentpole tournament like the World Cup or Six Nations is that everyone can get behind it.

“Even people who don’t normally watch the sport can get involved via our Sportsbook or go to the pub and soak in the excitement with a crowd.

“Rugby is famous for its welcoming atmosphere, and if one young person watches this World Cup and is hooked for life – that can only be a good thing.”

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