Origins of Le Crunch

A brief history of the term used to describe rugby internationals between England and France

The French national rugby side beat England in Le Crunch on Saturday, to hand the 2018 Six Nations to Ireland with one week of the 2018 Six Nations remaining.

But do you know where the now almost-obligatory term Le Crunch to refer to the annual encounter between the two sides came from?

There is some doubt over the origin of the phrase. It has been claimed in some French media outlets that the term dates back to the first ever meeting between the two nations at Parc des Princes in 1906.

But the first verifiable use of the term Le Crunch to describe the clash between the two proud rugby nations was in the Irish Times in 1981, and there is evidence the paper borrowed an advertising slogan for apples as a pop-culture reference.

Some readers may remember the series of adverts for French Golden Delicious apples dating back to the 1970s.

The first advert hit British TV screens in 1976

The slogan was so successful it was used in campaigns for several years. One of the most famous was this Bugsy Malone pastiche from 1985.

This video was made as a preview of the 100th 'Crunch' match in August 2015 - the last time France beat

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