More than a fifth of Brits plan to watch rugby in pubs

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Teaming up: former rugby union international player Andy Goode said the sport brings people together
Teaming up: former rugby union international player Andy Goode said the sport brings people together
Some 22% of Brits have said the ultimate place to watch rugby is at the pub with friends because they can soak up the atmosphere, new research has found.

Greene King IPA launched a poll to find out the nation’s views ahead of the start of the Rugby World Cup today (20 September).

The survey discovered 17% said they will drink a couple of pints while watching the games, while one in 20 admitted to having five or more pints during a match.

Rugby predictions

It also found 14% thought the England Rugby team can bring the trophy home from the tournament with a quarter (25%) predicting New Zealand will be the 2019 champions.

Former rugby union international Andy Goode said: “Rugby brings people together more than any other sport – whether that’s down your local for some friendly competition with your mates, or at the stadium itself.

“It doesn’t matter who you are or where you have come from, it’s all about the atmosphere and the thrill of the game.”

Opportunities for pubs

Meanwhile, with the Rugby World Cup being held in Japan, the majority of matches will be televised early in the morning, which could pose opportunities and challenges for licensees.

Research carried out by MatchPint showed the opportunities for screening early morning matches​ in pubs could be fruitful, with consumers saying they’d like to watch games in the pub, according to Dom Collingwood, co-founder MatchPint.

Speaking at an MA500 meeting in Bath this month, Collingwood took a poll of the delegates in the room on whether or not they were going to show Rugby World Cup games this year, with the majority of operators in the room saying they would.

“Teams taking part in the World Cup are all well known, with the likes of England v France as highlight games,” he said. “It’s huge across the country with a recent survey finding that 21m people in the UK are interested in it.”

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