Finland National Rugby Union Team
Finland might be well-known for its excellent performance in the Formula One, ice-hockey, and Pesapallo or harness racing. Conversely, the nation is not as fierce as such in rugby, though it participates at international level. The Finland Rugby men's team is the official national team that represents it in the World Rugby Union games.
How far have they gone at the international level?
The Finland National Rugby Union have faced a challenging time since they first participated at the international level. Their first international game was played against Switzerland in 1982, and they lost badly. They only managed their first win against Norway in 1991.
Finland has never taken part in the Rugby World Cup, and the furthest they have gone with their international participation is the Europeans Nations Cup. Here, they were knocked out by Bulgaria in the first round, after losing both legs.
As of now, Finland Rugby men's team is ranked 97th worldwide with 29.30 points, though they have dropped a spot compared to 2015. Also, this is impressive, especially because they were considered the worst rugby team in the world back in 2011.
What is their winning trend?
Rugby has never been the best performing sport in Finland, though they have recorded some impressive wins against minor teams. Finland has played a total of 45 international games, with nine wins, 35 losses, and a draw. This leaves them with an average win percentage of 20%.
They have only played well against Estonia, where they won in two of the games they played. With Greece and Bosnia & Herzegovina, they have a 50% win percentage.
On paper, Finland only outshines or draws against the lowly ranked nations. Estonia is not even near the top 100 national rugby team worldwide. On the other hand, Greece is ranked 100, while Bosnia & Herzegovina are higher on the list, at 86.
Any upcoming games?
The Finland Rugby Men's team is expected to play Turkey and Bulgaria in the spring. They will be playing in the 15-aside, and everyone is expecting a better play for Finland.
The Finland National Rugby Union is made up of Finnish nationals, who play for various clubs around the world. They include the following;
• David Price
• Heikki Kylmaniemi
• Antti Leppanen
• Carl Pancutt
• Joonas Lahtinen
• Micke Holmstrom
• Sami Sarkki
• Muamer Polio
• Tumppi Finell - Vice Captain
• Joakim Grader
• Galen Rangiawha
• Mikko Jarvi - Team Captain
• Antti Lammi
• Jaakko Vilen
Other players include Christian Skogholm, Jussi Kivela, Olli-Pekka Tuomaala, Lauri Ylonen, Lasse Sariola, Juhani Majanen, Stephen Whittaker, Henri Repo, Karl Filtness, Tero Sivonnen, among others.
The Rugby Clubs in Finland train beginners through lessons and courses that are targeted to the young players. The qualified youth is then sent to represent the national team in the World Rugby Union games.
Though the men's national team is the most active in Finland, the Women's Rugby team, dubbed Raivottaret, are also taking part at the international level. The Finland Women's rugby team are 41 in the world, and they also have more points compared to the men's national team.
The 2020 Olympics is the next big thing that the Finland National Rugby Union is targeting. They will be taking part, and they are expected to raise their standards. Will they set a new record? Will this be a chance to make it to the Rugby World Cup? Only time will tell.