In the year 1899, the first club rugby championship was played in Argentina. This article by Eduardo García Sáenz is a tribute to the players, their families, and their clubs, for the vision put into action, in 1899.
Five Clubs participated:
- Lomas Athletic Club (formed in 1891)
- Rosario Athletic Club (today Club Atlético del Rosario, formed in 1867)
- Belgrano Athletic Club (formed in 1896)
- Buenos Aires Football Club (today Buenos Aires Cricket & Rugby Club, formed in 1864)
- Flores Athletic Club (today dissolved)
The Buenos Aires Football Assembly of 7 April 1899, chaired by Leslie William Corry-Smith, met and decided on the formation of the union and ongoing championship.
The tournament would include four teams from the city of Buenos Aires, who would play each other, before Rosario AC and the Montevideo Cricket Club (formed in 1861), travelled to Buenos Aires to contest the semi-finals. In the end the Uruguayan side was unable to gather enough players and so withdrew.
The inaugural fixture took place on Thursday 11 May 1899, in the small town of Lomas de Zamora, headquarters of Lomas AC, where the home side defeated Buenos Aires FC, 11-4.
Flores Athletic Club were then defeated at home by Belgrano Athletic Club, 16-0, in both sides first ever matches. Flores followed this up, on Sunday 28 May, with another home defeat to Buenos Aires FC, 24-0.
On 1 June in Belgrano AC (at Virrey del Pino n° 3456, district of Belgrano, city of Buenos Aires) Belgrano Athletic C lost to Buenos Aires FC, 24-3.
Lomas AC then defeated Flores AC 15-5 on their home ground on 4 June.
On 11 June 11, Lomas suffered their first defeat, 11-8, to Buenos Aires FC, the first official victory in the history of "Bi Ei" (nickname of Buenos Aires FC).
On 18 June, Belgrano AC defeated Flores AC 17-3 at home. Belgrano AC's first home victory.
Buenos Aires FC beat Flores Athletic Club, 14-0 on 24 June then on 25 June 25 in Belgrano, Belgrano AC defeated Lomas AC, 3-0.
On 2 July, in Lomas, Buenos Aires FC lost to Belgrano Athletic Club 5-3.
On Sunday 9 July 9, on the day of the Independence of the Argentine Republic, Lomas AC defeated Flores AC 18-0.
Finally on Sunday 16 July 16, in Lomas, Lomas AC defeated Belgrano Athletic C, 10-3.