Unión de Rugby de Rosario
|Unión de Rugby de Rosario|
|Founded||1927 (as Santa Fe Rugby Union)|
|Unión Argentina de Rugby affiliation||1953|
The Rosario Rugby Union (Spanish: Unión de Rugby de Rosario) or URR is the organisational body that controls the game of rugby union in Rosario, in the province of Santa Fe, Argentina. The rest of Santa Fe province being controlled by the Unión Santafesina de Rugby.
The first rugby game in Argentina took place on 28 June 1886, between Atlético del Rosario and Buenos Aires Football Club (which was also the first association football team of Argentina). Buenos Aires won the match, as well as a second game played some days later.
In 1927 the British Touring Club arrived to Rosario to play a match against an Argentine team formed by players of different clubs. The game (won by Touring) was the first international game played at the city of Rosario.
One year later, Atlético del Rosario, Universitario, Gimnasia y Esgrima, Provincial, Newell's Old Boys and Deportivo Argentino (now defunct) founded the "Santa Fe Rugby Union". That same year the recently formed union played a game against a team from the River Plate Rugby Union (current Unión de Rugby de Buenos Aires), won by the visitor by 8-6.
In 1923 the official tournaments organised by the union began to be disputed. In 1932 the Union team played its first international match facing South Africa. The Springboks defeated Santa Fe 53-3. That same year the Union changed its name to "Unión de Rugby del Litoral Argentino", adding teams from the cities of Santa Fe and Entre Ríos.
In 1953 the union changed to its current name, "Unión de Rugby del Rosario", achieving its greatest goal in 1965 when winning the Campeonato Argentino. The Rosario union team toured outside Argentina for the first time in 1993, visiting England. Two years later the team played some friendly matches in New Zealand.
Since 1993, the Unión de Rugby de Rosario teams have taken part in the Nacional de Clubes tournament. They also were added to Torneo del Interior in 1998, and they were added to Torneo del Litoral (along with Santa Fe and Entre Ríos unions teams) in 2000.
The union is represented in the Campeonato Argentino, a competition in which each of the 24 unions that make up the Unión Argentina de Rugby (UAR) participate. Rosario won the competition on one occasion in 1965, winning 8-6 against Buenos Aires, and have finished second a further 16 times, all but 4 finals were lost to Buenos Aires.
There are 13 affiliated member clubs, including one, Club Atlético del Rosario which competes in the Buenos Aires league.
The remaining clubs all compete in the annual Torneo del Litoral, an inter-provincial competition that also includes teams from the neighboring unions of Santa Fe and Entre Ríos. The Litoral competition has been dominated by Rosario clubs over the years with all but one titles going to Rosarino clubs.
In the past, clubs from Rosario used to take part in a Rosario provincial championship. Since 2000 however, the inter-provincial Litoral competition has taken over and the provincial tournament is no longer played at the superior level. Provincial competitions still exist for clubs at underage level however.
Clubs from Rosario have also enjoyed some success in the national club tournament. Jockey Club (1997) and Duendes (2004, 2009) have won the competition, and both have reached the final in other tournaments.