Australia 2003 Rugby World Cup

From Stamps of the World
Australia 2003 Rugby World Cup a.jpg
  • Issue Date: 8 October 2003
  • Designed by: Beth McKinlay
  • Printed by: McPherson's Printing
  • Print Process: Lithography
  • Perforations: 14½ x 14
  • Dimensions: 30.55mm x 30mm
  • Format: sheets of 20


From 10 October to 22 November 2003 Australia will host the Rugby World Cup – the year’s biggest international sporting event. This year’s cup will see the world’s best rugby teams contest 48 matches over 44 days. Matches will be played in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Canberra, Gosford, Townsville, Adelaide and Wollongong.

This Rugby World Cup is guaranteed to be unique on at least two points near and dear to Australian fans. It will be the first time the host nation will defend its title and the first time the RWC final will be played in Australia.

Twenty nations will contest the finals in four pools of five teams each. The top two teams in each of the four pools will progress to the quarterfinals. The quarterfinals winners then progress to the final to be played at Telstra Stadium in Sydney on 22 November 2003.


The three stamps (one each 50c, $1.10, $1.65) and miniature sheet show distinctive aspects of the game of rugby and the Rugby World Cup trophy (the Webb Ellis Cup). The stamps show a sequence of play using silhouetted figures in action to tell the story of the game.

The 50c stamp features the pass with a graphic representation of the goals and silhouettes of players running with the ball. The central stamp ($1.10) features the Webb Ellis Cup against a background depiction of night play at Telstra Stadium. A graphic representation of the goals and a silhouette of a player lining up to take a shot at goal features on the $1.65 stamp. A mix of domestic and international denominations reinforces the international nature of the event.


Miniature Sheet

The central motif of the miniature sheet shows a silhouette of the Webb Ellis Cup atop the oval, embracing shape of a rugby ball. The oval which cuts through the stamps, is symbolic of a worldwide sport that encompasses many nations and cultures. It is a visual expression of the cup’s slogan, ‘the world in union’, which is printed along the base of the miniature sheet. Rugby fans feature in the border area of the miniature sheet.

Miniature sheet of 3 values

First Day Cover

The first day of issue postmark is Sydney NSW 2000.

First day cover - sheet stamps
First day cover - miniature sheet

Prestige Booklet

  • Printer: SNP Sprint

The prestige booklet has three miniature sheet panes (with a face value of $9.75) interleaved with information about the participating teams, and a souvenir postcard of the William Webb Ellis Cup. Each miniature sheet pane in the prestige booklet is exclusive to the booklet.

Prestige booklet front cover
Prestige booklet back cover
Prestige booklet pane of 3 x 50c
Prestige booklet pane of 3 x $1.10
Prestige booklet pane of 3 x $1.65

Maximum Cards

50c maximum card
$1.10 maximum card
$1.65 maximum card

Presentation Pack

Presentation pack front cover
Presentation pack back cover
Presentation pack of 3 values and miniature sheet