Rugby and romance: how being a rugby fan might get you a date!

woman clapping in a sports games crowd

Those seeking love this autumn may want to brush up on their their drop-kick knowledge and line-out tips: a new EliteSingles survey has revealed that more than half of singles want to date a rugby fan.¹ That means if you’re a fan (or just excited for the Rugby World Cup) it’s about to be a great month for both rugby and romance.

So what is it about rugby that is so alluring? And, if you’re part of the rugby-loving majority, then how can you bag yourself a fellow fan? EliteSingles has the answers!

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Are you a rugby fan? Then we’ve got good news

The survey asked 2400 single men and single women from ten different countries2 what they thought about dating, love – and rugby. The results were fascinating: 57 per cent of singles declared that they would prefer to date ‘’someone who is really passionate about rugby.’’

This made rugby fans the most sought-after sport nuts, with just 31 per cent of singles surveyed saying that they’d like to date someone who is into a different sport. Of course , whether you like rugby, cricket or something else, the main thing is that you like sport – any sport! Only 12 per cent of singles would date someone who ‘’hates all sports.’’

Rugby enthusiasm is not just for blokes!

The survey also revealed that this rugby enthusiasm was not just a guy thing. In fact, flying in the face of certain dated stereotypes, the results showed that women not only want a piece of the rugby action, they may just be more keen on it than the men! Indeed, 80 per cent of women surveyed indicated that they find rugby fans interesting and sexy, as opposed to 78 per cent of men who think the same.

However, before men start inviting female rugby fans round for a thrillingly romantic evening of Rugby World Cup action, it’s important to note that, while women like rugby fans, they don’t necessarily want to watch the game while on a date. Indeed, while the majority of men (52 per cent) would prefer to watch the RWC ‘’with a date,’’ just 39 per cent of women feel the same. Their preference is to watch ‘’with friends,’’ with 50 per cent of women picking this option.

Rugby and romance inforgraphic

Are you feeling increasingly excited about rugby?

One reason for this overwhelming rugby interest could be because the 2015 Rugby World Cup is about to kick off – and singles around the country are jumping on the bandwagon. The survey results supported this idea by highlighting an interesting trend (one that held true for every country involved): the percentage of people who say that they love rugby rises during major international tournaments.

In a normal year, Wales is the most rugby-mad country in the UK, with 53 per cent of singles saying they are passionate about the game. This gets boosted to 90 per cent in an RWC year. On the other hand, Scotland is usually the least rugby enthusiastic nation in the UK, with 38 per cent of singles regularly supporting the game. But, the Scots can boast the highest increase in supporters when 89 per cent of Scottish singles jump on the RWC watching bandwagon. In Northern Ireland, it didn’t seem to matter too much to singles if it is RWC year, with rugby supporters only rising from 52 per cent to 67 per cent. Meanwhile, in England, 41 per cent of singles said they were passionate about rugby all year round, in comparison with 85 per cent during the RWC.

Worldwide, the title has to go to singles from South Africa: not only do they manage 55 per cent support normally, but that also rises to a whopping 92 per cent once the tournament kicks off!

How to impress a rugby fan

So, singles are attracted to those who like rugby and, thanks to the bandwagon boost, there are more fans about than normal. But how can people make the most of this RWC fever?

The best way to flirt and impress a rugby fan – according to the survey – is to know the rules. In fact, 41 per cent of singles would find themselves swooning over someone who can explain the finer points of an uncontested scrum or call a yellow card before the ref has raised his whistle. If however, you can’t tell your rucks from your mauls, don’t fret – you can still score during the game. Enthusiasm counts: 21 per cent of singles are most attracted to those who cheer loudly, while for 20 per cent all that is required is that someone supports the same team.

And finally, which RWC players from the Home Nations have been voted the sexist? Our survey saw English singles vote Danny Care the sexiest member of England’s World Cup Squad. Meanwhile, Alasdair Strokosch can be happy in the knowledge that he was voted by Scottish singles as the hottest member of Scotland’s World Cup Squad. The Irish swoon over Connor Murray the most, and although Leigh Halfpenny may have seen his Rugby World Cup dreams dashed by injury, there is news that may soften the blow: the survey saw him voted the sexiest member of the Welsh rugby team.

Sick of playing the field? Do you want to meet UK singles who love rugby as much as you do? Make a winning play for love – try EliteSingles. Just click here to register.


1 All statistics from the EliteSingles ‘Rugby and Romance’ survey, September 2015. Sample size: 2400 men and women.

2 Countries involved in the survey: New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, France, Canada and the USA.

About the author: Sophie Watson

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