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In rugby union, a Grand Slam occurs when one team in the Six Nations Championship (or its predecessors) manages to beat all the others during one year's competition. The last team to have won the Six Nations Grand Slam was Ireland in 2009.

Six Nations Championship

In the Six Nations Championship and its predecessors, a grand slam is where one team beats all its opponents during one year's competition. [242833] The Grand Slam winners are awarded the Six Nations trophy (as tournament winners), but there is no special grand slam trophy. The Grand Slam is just a matter of pride over glory.

Although the term Grand Slam had long been in use in the game of Contract Bridge, the first time that the expression is known to have been applied to rugby union was in 1957, in a preview of a match between England and :

Three teams — in 1908 and 09, in 1913 and 14, 1923 and 24 and 1991 and 92, and in 1997 and 98 — have won two consecutive Grand Slams; no team has yet achieved three consecutive Grand Slams.

Prior to 2000, each team played four matches, two at home and two away from home. Following the inclusion of in 2000, each team plays five matches, two at home and three away in one year, and the opposite in the following season. When Wales won the Grand Slam in 2005, it was the first time that the feat had been achieved by a team that had played more matches away than at home. This was repeated in 2009 with Ireland winning matches away to Italy, Scotland and Wales. The Welsh Grand Slam in 2008 saw them become the second team to win two Grand Slams in the Six Nations, but the first to do so with both three away games and two home games.

The Grand Slam has been achieved 35 times — Englandmarker leads, with 12 wins, followed by Walesmarker (10), Francemarker (8), (3) and Ireland (2). Italymarker has yet to win a Grand Slam, but has also only been in the tournament for a decade.

In Welsh, the Grand Slam is called Y Gamp Lawn, in French Le Grand Chelem.

Nation W Grand Slam Season
12 1913, 1914, 1921, 1923, 1924, 1928, 1957, 1980, 1991, 1992, 1995, 2003
10 1908, 1909, 1911, 1950, 1952, 1971, 1976, 1978, 2005, 2008
8 1968, 1977, 1981, 1987, 1997, 1998, 2002, 2004
3 1925, 1984, 1990
2 1948, 2009
0


List of Grand Slam Winners

1882–1907 France did not take part in the championship
1908
1909
1911
1913
1914
1915–19 No tournament during World War I
1921
1923
1924
1925
1928
1932–39 France was suspended from the championship
1940–46 No tournament during World War II
1948
1950
1952
1957
1968
1971
1976
1977
1978
1980
1981
1984
1987
1990
1991
1992
1995
1997
1998
2000 Tournament expanded to include Italy.
2002
2003
2004
2005
2008
2009


Similar in concept to the Grand Slam is the Triple Crown, which is won if a team from one of the Home Nations (Englandmarker, Scotlandmarker, Walesmarker and Irelandmarker) manages to beat the other three teams. The Triple Crown was won most recently by Ireland, in 2009, as part of their Six Nations Grand Slam victory.

Grand Slam Tour

A Grand Slam tour is one in which a touring side plays Test matches against the four Home Nations: England, Wales, Ireland, and Scotland. If the tourists win all four games, they are said to have achieved a grand slam.

Wins against all four Home Nations in the same tour have been achieved four times by , three times by New Zealand and once by , who has the record of being the only Southern Hemisphere team to suffer a grand slam of defeats against the Home Nations, in 1957–58.

1912–13, 1931–32, 1951–52, 1960–61
1978, 2005, 2008
1984


Because of the congested schedule in international rugby, grand slam tours may become less common. The last successful grand slam tour was in 2008, when New Zealand achieved their third grand slam. The All Blacks' previous Grand Slam tour, in 2005, was originally intended to include only three Test matches; only the late inclusion of the game against Wales made it possible for the All Blacks even to contemplate winning the grand slam. In addition, New Zealand played only test matches in 2005 and played only one non-test in 2008, as opposed to frequent midweek and weekend tour games against provincial sides which categorised other Grand Slam tours.

List of Grand Slam tours (against all four Home Nations)

Successful tours (in which all four Home Nations were defeated) are indicated with a green check mark.
Teams Achieved Year
1905-1906
South Africa 1906
1912-1913
1927-1928
1931-1932
1935-1936
1947-1948
1951-1952
1953-1954
1958
1960-1961
1963-1964
1966-1967
1969-1970
1972-1973
1975-1976
1978
1981-1982
1984
1998
2004
2005
2008
2009


See also



References



External links




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