The Calcutta Cup originated in India (semi-obviously) and came about after a game of rugby on Christmas Day 1872 when an English representative side played against a Scottish, Irish and Welsh representative side (I’m not not sure who won-hopefully the English-apologies other country brethren!).
After the success of the match a club was formed, The Calcutta Football Club, and continued to play regular matches enjoying a strong inaugural year membership.
However, after the free bar was discontinued (yes the FREE bar!), in the second year membership dwindled (not semi-obviously).
After this decrease in numbers the founding and remaining members disbanded the club taking out the club’s remaining funds from the bank, which was paid in silver rupees…… can you see where this is going?
They melted the rupees and made “The Calcutta Cup” presenting it to the English RFU in 1878 with the hope of it being competed for annually through a club competition.
The cup that’s presented nowadays is not the original as it is too frail and damaged mainly in part due to Dean Richards and John Jeffrey kicking it around Princess Street in Edinburgh after the England versus Scotland game in 1988!
Free bars at rugby clubs and kicking a prestigious trophy around the streets, that’s what sport is all about in my eyes!
Apologies for the red top-like headline and bracketed exclamation marked comments but it does remind you of our heritage and just how great our world class sporting events are.
Contact us for similar stories including how the famous green jacket for The US Masters was originally made out of indigenous moss by Wayne McDougall, one of the first Scots to colonise the newly founded United States of America and how the first ever Formula 1 Grand Prix was raced between two hand made soap box carts down a hill in Monaco.
(last two not true!)