Rugby union in Bahrain

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Rugby union in Bahrain
National team(s) Bahrain
First playedMid 20th century

Rugby union in Bahrain is a minor but growing sport.


Governing body

The Bahrain Rugby Football Union is the national governing body, under the Arabian Gulf RFU. By the end of 2010, the AGRFU will be broken up, with new unions to be established in each member country, as announced in January 2009 by the IRB. The first national union to be formed from the AGRFU is expected to be that of the UAE. [1]


Bahraini rugby is frequently played in high temperatures, and much of the time on sand. [2] Beach rugby and rugby sevens are also popular. Up until the mid-1980s, the only grass rugby pitch in the country was next to the airport, and games were could be interrupted by the comings and goings of the aircraft. [3]

The sport was reintroduced by Commonwealth ex-patriates working in the oil industry, and they continue to dominate the game. [4] [5] For example, the ARGFU website continues to be in English only. A problem is the drinking culture of rugby, which discourages Muslims from taking up the sport. [5]

Bahrain also has a national sevens team. [6]

See also

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  1. "Major boost for West Asia" (Press release). International Rugby Board. 16 January 2009. Archived from the original on 10 October 2012. Retrieved 19 January 2009.
  2. Cain, Nick & Growden, Greg "Chapter 21: Ten Peculiar Facts about Rugby" in Rugby Union for Dummies (2nd Edition), p295 (pub: John Wiley and Sons, Chichester, England) ISBN   978-0-470-03537-5
  3. Cotton, p16
  4. Bath, p62
  5. 1 2 "Islam and Rugby" on the Rugby Readers review retrieved 2 July 2009
  6. McLaren, Bill A Visit to Hong Kong in Starmer-Smith, Nigel & Robertson, Ian (eds) The Whitbread Rugby World '90 (Lennard Books, 1989), p 70