The England Rugby team might be one of the most prestigious and historic in the history of the sport, but that does not mean they haven’t been on the wrong end of some painful defeats.
What was England’s biggest loss in rugby history? England’s 76-0 loss in Australia in 1998 is still by far the worst loss in the team’s history. It is also the most points England have ever conceded, regardless of the fact they failed to score even 1 point themselves.
On this day in 1998 England suffered their biggest ever defeat to Australia, losing 76 -0 !— Rugby Lives (@RugbyLives) June 6, 2018
It was also the day Jonny Wilkinson made his first start for England at the age of 20. Fair to say he went on to do alright 🙌 pic.twitter.com/ovcNjpuESJ
While England and Australia have often been pretty evenly matched in the history of Rugby, there was one famous game in 1998 when the Wallabies were certainly on top. In June and July of 1998, England had planned a pretty long and tiring tour of Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
They began the tour in Brisbane with a single test match against Australia planned. The Wallabies played excellently well and won the game 76-0. It is still the worst defeat in the history of English rugby, but there is a good reason for the result being so bad.
This was not the best team that England could have taken on tour. Since professional rugby had been created, the international schedule had been exceptionally busy. England players played home tests and the Lions tour the previous year. They were coming off the back of a tiring domestic schedule.
Woodward was hoping to bring a full-strength squad on the tour, but lots of players began withdrawing from the tour, citing fatigue or injuries. England were without all three of their starting backrow, including captain Lawrence Dallaglio. Lions captain Martin Johnson withdrew from the tour, as well as Jason Leonard and Jeremy Guscott.
England boss Clive Woodward had to take a very inexperienced group on the tour, which included a number of different players making their debut. The tour went awfully for England, becoming known as the “Tour from Hell”. But there were still some positives which came out of the tour despite the record-breaking defeat.
Quite a few of the England side who won the Rugby World Cup in 2003, just 5 years later, featured on that tour, including Johnny Wilkinson getting his first chance of being England’s Fly-Half. Guys like Lewis Moody, Phil Vickery and Matt Dawson all featured on the tour, with all of them later featuring in the 2003 win.
What was England’s biggest Six Nations defeat?
England might have countless Six Nations trophies, but they have still been on the back of some awful defeats.
England’s biggest Six Nations defeat was their 53-10 loss to France. This happened in the 2023 Six Nations, and it was a terrible result for England. At the moment, France are one of the best teams in the world while England are struggling to find their feet under new head coach Steve Borthwick.
France were able to physically monster the English pack in the 2023 Six Nations and score seven tries. Not only was this the biggest loss that England had ever been on the end of in the Six Nations, but it was also their biggest loss at Twickenham. It was a clear sign of the difference in quality between the two teams.
This loss surpassed England’s 43-13 loss to Ireland in the 2007 Six Nations as the team’s worst ever defeat in Six Nations history.
What is the biggest loss in Six Nations history
The Six Nations is often a competitive tournament, although there have been quite a few games which have certainly not been competitive. You might not be surprised to hear that Italy were the team on the wrong end of the biggest loss in Six Nations history.
Italy’s 80-23 loss in the 2001 Six Nations campaign is by far the biggest defeat in the history of the Six Nations. 2001 was a pretty awful Six Nations campaign for Italy as they lost all five of their games. Things went very badly when Italy travelled to England to face the English in Twickenham.
England managed to run in 10 tries and they were able to convert nine of them, with Johnny Wilkinson missing just a single conversion. Iain Balshaw and Austin Healey were the two players who scored a pair of tries, while six other players got on the scoresheet as well. Lawrence Dallaglio, Will Greenwood and Joe Worsley were also on the scoresheet.
It is the biggest winning margin in the Six Nations, as well as the biggest home winning margin by any team in the Six Nations. This game also equalled the record for the most tries in one match, with the teams scoring a combined 12 tries all together.
It would certainly take quite a performance to beat this mark. It also holds the record for most points scored by a single team in a Six Nations game, as well as the most points scored in a single game.
Have England ever lost to Italy at Rugby?
Italy is one of the rugby nations that have been rising in the last few years. Despite a terrible record since joining the Six Nations, they have at least beaten Scotland, France, Wales and Ireland. However, there is one team that they have not beaten.
England has never lost to Italy in Rugby. In test rugby, the two nations have played against each other 30 times and yet Italy have never been able to defeat England. They have come close on two occasions, losing by just four points in 2008 and 2012.
In 2008, Italy scored a try in the 76th minute to bring the game into a one score game. But they were not able to score the winner in the final few minutes and England held on for the win. Four years later the pair had another close game in Rome.
Italy actually took the lead at half-time, extending their lead to nine points just seven points off. But England were able to launch a comeback, thanks mainly to a Charlie Hodgson try. Two Owen Farrell penalties gave England a four-point lead which they held onto for the final 15 minutes. So, at the moment, England has never lost to Italy.