A Rugby card is a type of trading card relating to Rugby football, usually printed on cardboard, silk, or plastic. These cards are most often found in the Australia, New Zealand and other countries where the sport is popular.
Early versions of rugby union trading cards came at the beginning of 20th century, when tobacco companies released their cigarette card series. The first collections consisted on black and white photographs of rugby players, such examples of this were series issued by Ogden and W.D. & H.O. Wills (both in 1902) and Taddy (1906). Later collections featured color illustrations of player portraits (Ogden, 1906) and live actions (issued by Gallagher in 1912).
In successive decades, other tobacco manufacturers launched series. In 1926, Ogden released a new black and white series of players. The same year, John Player & Sons released a series that consisted of caricatures of rugby players.In 1935, W.A. & A.C. Churchman released an illustrated series displaying player portraits.
Australian company Scanlens produced its first rugby league set in 1963,releasing several collections during the 1970s and 1980s. Other companies that produced cards were Stimorol (1988–91) and Regina (1992–93), until Dynamic Market took over the contract to produce rugby league cards in Australia.
Another Australian company, "Select Australia", entered into the business in 2000.The company was the official licensee for National Rugby League (NRL) cards (2010–12). Since then, the NRL licensed company "Elite Sport Properties" (ESP) to produce trading cards. The NRL also released its own collections, Startoons, featuring caricatures of players.
Some rugby union/rugby league card collections released through the years include:
|1902||Ogden's||Footballers||Black and white photographs of players|
|1902||Wills||Footballers||Black and white photographs of players|
|1902||Cadle's||Footballers||Black and white photographs of players|
|1906||Taddy||Footballers||Black and white photographs of players|
|1906||Ogden's||Football Club Colours||Illustrations of players|
|1909||Churchman||Football Club Colours||Illustrations of players|
|1915||Fred Morgan||Welsh Footballers & Cricketers||Black and white photographs of players|
|1926||Ogden's||Famous Rugby Players||Black and white photographs of players|
|1926||Player's||Footballers||Caricatures of players|
|1927||Wills||New Zealand footballers||Black and white photographs of players|
|1928||Player's||Footballers||Illustrations of players|
|1929||Wills||Rugby internationals||Caricatures of players|
|1930||Wills||Rugby players||Black and white photographs of players|
|1935||Churchman||Internationals||Illustrations of players|
|1935||Ogden's||Football Caricatures||Caricatures of players|
|1938||United Tobacco||British Rugby Tour of S. Africa||Black and white player photographs of players|
|1963||Scanlens||Football Gum||Color photographs of players|
|1976||KFC||All Blacks||Black and white photographs of players|
|1995||Rugby Australia||The Wallabies||Color photographs of players|
|1995||Futera||Rugby Union 1995|
|1995||Dynamic Marketing||'95 Contenders||Color photographs of players|
|1996||Card Crazy Authentics||Rugby Superstars||Color photographs of players|
|1998||Panini||Premier Division 98||Color photographs of players, teams, and emblems|
|2016||Tap'n'Play||Super Rugby||Featuring Super Rugby players.|
|2019||Glenisk||Irish Rugby||Color photographs of players|
|2020||NRL||Startoons||Caricatures of players|
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