AJ MacGinty contributed 32 points to Sale’s 57-14 Champions Cup win over scarlet’s in Llanelli at the weekend. It was a stunning performance consisting of two tries, six conversions, and five penalties. MacGinty’s Sunday show overshadowed his best Test came against Chile in February 2019, when he scored a hat-trick and added five conversions in a 71-8 win for the USA, but who has a Test record for the most points in a single match? Rugby World Cup fans can buy Rugby World Cup 2023 tickets from our website at discounted prices.
In light of American heroism, we count down the top five individual points in Test match history.
SIMON CULHANE (45 POINTS) JAPAN V NEW ZEALAND, 4 JUNE, 1995
Simon Culhane was sitting on the bench for the opening two Matches of the 1995 Rugby World Cup New Zealand when Andrew Mehrten organized victories over Ireland and Wales.
But confident of qualifying for the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals, All Blacks Laurie Mains decided to shake his pack and gave Culhane his Test debut. Fans can buy Rugby World Cup 2023 tickets by visiting our website
The Southland playmaker was called up within three minutes to convert Eric Rush’s opening try, and it was supposed to be a busy afternoon.
Culhane converted 20 of All Black’s 21 try, eight of which he scored himself as New Zealand completed their Pool C campaign with a 145-17 victory.
It was the biggest rugby World Cup difference ever recorded – until Australia beat Namibia 142-0 at RWC in 2003 – and remains the biggest points win the team has ever earned in a tournament match.
Culhane’s 45-point haul is still the most scored by one player at the Rugby World Cup. For Australia Rugby World Cup tickets visit the website.
JOSÉ MARÍA NÚÑEZ PIOSSEK (45 POINTS) PARAGUAY V ARGENTINA, 27 APRIL, 2003
José María Núñez Piossek was one of three Argentine players to score four times in a 152-0 victory over Paraguay in May 2002. But even he couldn’t expect to run in just three hat-tricks after 12 months.
Three decades after Eduardo Morgan scored a record 50 points against Paraguay, Piossek wore the same blue-and-white number 14 jersey to write the next chapter in history in the program.
The Rugby World Cup Argentinean, who lined up for the South American Championship in Montevideo in 2003, was relatively inexperienced and included 20-year-old Juan Martín Hernández full-time.
However, Los Pumas proved too good for Paraguay and ran 24 tries in a 144-0 win at the Luis Franzini Stadium.
Piossek scored nine of those tries and became only the fifth player in Test history to score at least 45 points.
Piossek maintained his form throughout 2003, scoring tries against France and South Africain June and earning his place in Argentina’s Rugby World Cup 2003 squad. He played three matches in Australia, including against the hosts, without scoring.
EDUARDO MORGAN (50 POINTS) ARGENTINA V PARAGUAY, 14 OCTOBER, World Cup 1973
Eduardo Morgan, a winger who backed up for the tee, enjoyed his best moments in an Argentine jersey during the 1973 South American Championship. For Argentina Rugby World Cup tickets visit our website eticketing.
Los Pums warmed up in the tournament with a win over Romania in Buenos Aires.
Morgan played in both Tests without scoring, which he corrected in Argentina’s opening match of the South American Championship against Paraguay in Sao Paulo.
The winger scored six times and added 13 conversions from the tee as the Los Pumas won 98-3.
Awarded four points for the try at the time, he gave Morgan 50 points, a world record that would have cost him nearly three decades.
ASHLEY BILLINGTON (50 POINTS) HONG KONG V SINGAPORE, 27 OCTOBER, 1994
Ashley Billington played six Tests for Hong Kong between 1994 and 1996, and his most memorable day in the blue jersey came during his only appearance at the 1994 Asian Championships.
Billington lined up at KL Football Stadium in Kuala Lumpur in a match that doubled as a 1995 Rugby World Cup qualifier and had a field day.
The then 25-year-old ran in 10 of Hong Kong’s 26 attempts to help his side to a 164-13 victory and a draw with Morgan’s world record.
It turns out to be the pinnacle of Billington’s Test career. He scored twice in his first two games for Hong Kong, both in a 22-12 defeat to Namibia, but failed to get over the line in any of the next three games.
Billington won his last Test for Hong Kong as a replacement for the 47-7 defeat to Japan in October 1998.
TORU KURIHARA (60 POINTS) CHINESE TAIPEI V JAPAN, 21 JULY, 2002 Rugby World Cup
Japan took on China Taipei and Korea in the 2003 Rugby World Cup qualifiers, and it’s fair to say the team had fun. The Brave Blossoms won each of their four games with a total of 420-47, including a 155-3 victory over Taipei, China, in Tokyo.
Toru Kurihara scored 21 points in that game, but he hid his best performance on the return two weeks later.
In Taina, the winger scored six tries and added 15 conversions to round out the match with a world record 60 points, which is still 19 years later.
Kurihara, another kicking winger who was also seen full-time, made four appearances at the 2003 Rugby World Cup with 40 points – 19 against France and 21 against the USA.