As rugby has become an Olympic sport, it’s only natural for the network of the Olympics, NBC to pick up the rights to the Rugby World Cup. It’s a seven year agreement that will begin with this year’s Women’s Rugby World Cup in Ireland and the Under-20 Championship in Georgia and last through 2023.

Here are the events that will be covered under this long-term agreement:

  • 2017: Women’s Rugby World Cup (Ireland); World Rugby U20 Championship (Georgia)
  • 2018: Rugby World Cup Sevens (San Francisco, Calif.); World Rugby U20 Championship
  • 2019: Rugby World Cup (Japan); World Rugby U20 Championship
  • 2020: World Rugby U20 Championship
  • 2021: Women’s Rugby World Cup; World Rugby U20 Championship
  • 2022: Rugby World Cup Sevens; World Rugby U20 Championship
  • 2023: Rugby World Cup; World Rugby U20 Championship

NBC Sports expects to televise the events on the NBC Television Network, NBCSN, The Olympic Channel, online at, NBC Sports app, NBC Sports Gold and other platforms through technology that has yet to be invented.

NBC says the rugby sevens events will be carried on the Olympic Channel. It’s that event that’s in the Olympics so it’s a natural progression for Olympic Channel which will begin operation in July.

This isn’t the first time that NBC Sports has carried the Rugby World Cup. It did so back in 2011 and 2015.

By carrying the World Rugby events through 2023, NBC has made a commitment to the sport and fans will know they have a one-stop shopping destination in the Peacock through 2023.

About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the four Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.