The Rugby World Cup in numbers as all-time records get smashed

Dylan Coetzee
Split with Owen Farrell (England), Antoine Dupont (France), the Springboks, Fiji v Wales and Will Jordan (All Blacks.

Split with Rugby World Cup stars Owen Farrell, Antoine Dupont, the world champion Springboks, Fiji v Wales and Will Jordan.

The 2023 Rugby World Cup was certainly the most connected we have ever seen and also the tournament with the biggest access to data.

With that in mind, Planet Rugby dives into the numbers to give readers insight into the interesting data from the amazing tournament.


4 – The record number of Rugby World Cups South Africa has won as the decorated team added the 2023 title to their triumphs in 1995, 2007 and 2019. The Springboks are the first team in history to win four, which is especially impressive considering the team did not compete in the first two editions of the tournament in 1987 and 1991 due to a sporting boycott.

2nd – The Springboks become the second team to win back-to-back titles after the great All Blacks side in 2011 and 2015. It is a fascinating moment in history as Siya Kolisi joins Richie McCaw as the only captains to lead their teams to double glory.

5 – En route to their historic title, the South Africans faced all of the other five teams in the top six of the world rankings, only losing to Ireland.

100% – Handre Pollard was perfect from the kicking tee as the final piece to the Springbok jigsaw puzzle. The iceman kicked 13/13, including two match-winning kicks late in the quarter-final and the semi-final to earn his side the title.

34 – The number of points Pollard has now scored in Rugby World Cup finals which is more than any other player in history.


974 – The champions made the most tackles in the competition, racking up close to 1,000 in France. England were the next best with exactly 100 less.

28 – Tireless flanker Pieter-Steph du Toit equalled a World Cup record for most tackles in a single game with 28 in the final. He holds the record on his own for the most hits in a final.

252 – Wales had some history written of their own as they showcased their resilience and commitment on defence against Fiji, smashing the record for most team tackles in a single World Cup game.

92 – Argentina superstar Marcos Kremer was the leading tackler from the tournament, almost reaching a century as he slugged it out for his country, constantly emptying the tank. He smashed the record for the most tackles in a single tournament eclipsing Taulupe Faletau’s 83 in 2011.

Tries & points

325 – The total number of tries scored at the tournament in 2023 and not terribly far off the record, which is only seven tries more from the 2003 edition.

49 – New Zealand scored the most tries of any team in France with a ridiculous total of 49 in what was a remarkable attacking effort. Interestingly, the All Blacks scored 19 more than the second-most tries.

8 – Will Jordan put his name amongst some of the greats in the game by scoring eight tries in the tournament, including a stunning hat-trick against Argentina in the semi-finals. Jordan now sits alongside Jonah Lomu, Bryan Habana and Julian Savea as the record holder for most tries in one tournament.

5 – Young superstar Henry Arundell scored five tries against Chile, equalling an English record for most tries in a single World Cup game. It was brilliant to see the lethal wing get a chance to showcase his finishing.

82 – It is no surprise to see the great Ardie Savea as the tournament’s top carrier. The World Rugby Men’s 15s Player of the Year gave everything to the badge and had a sublime tournament, complete with 82 carries.

13 – The number of clean breaks the effortless French wing Damian Penaud made. The Les Bleus star makes rugby look alarmingly easy and could well have made more if France went deeper.

10 – The leading number of offloads made in France, a number shared by Les Bleus skipper Antoine Dupont and former All Black and now Tongan star Salesi Piutau.

336 – New Zealand’s total points at the World Cup were almost a full 100 more than the second-best, underlining how brilliant the All Blacks attack was.

75 – Despite missing some of the earlier action due to his ban, England captain Owen Farrell ran out the top points scorer with 75 for the Red Rose.

1271 – Farrell’s total points at Test level after he surpassed the great Jonny Wilkinson as England’s leading all-time points scorer.

1113 – The number of points Johnny Sexton has scored for Ireland as he, too, became his country’s leading points scorer of all-time, going above Ronan O’Gara.


130,000 – An outstanding record for the number of pints sold at a World Cup match. Smashing the previous record set in the tournament of 90,000. Hydrating was essential in the French heat.

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