It’s that time of the year when the home international teams are heading off on tour, though with the extended nature of the calendar these days, those tours are starting later and later.

Thirty years ago, the July issue of Rugby World already had plenty of tour news ready to print, reflecting on England in South Africa, Wales in Canada, Scotland in Argentina and Ireland in Australia.

England’s tour was to a South Africa now rehabilitated on the world stage after the end of apartheid, a nation ready to host the Rugby World Cup in 1995. After the two-match series ended in a draw, skipper Will Carling summed things up by saying, “I rate South Africa as a good side but if we meet them in the World Cup, I think we will beat them.” The following year, the All Blacks would deny them that chance.

Sandwiched in between the two tests was a violent game in Port Elizabeth that saw Tim Rodber sent off and sparked a stentorian Rugby World editorial about a ‘crisis of leadership’ in the game.

You can read that, and all the tour reports, here.

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