The remarkable evolution of the modern day rugby player
The players at this year's World Cup are setting new records for physical extremes - but how far have they come and what do they go through?
From blistering runs to bludgeoning scrums, with countless shuddering hits in between.
The physical extremes reached by players during the opening weekend of the Rugby World Cup have been clear for all to see.
Indeed, modern rugby is almost unrecognisable to the game that was played at the inaugural tournament in 1987.
The arrival of the professional era combined with considerable advances in sports science mean that the physical demands of the sport have reached a level that has never been seen before.
As a result, players must strive to be bigger, faster and stronger than ever before.
So, just how extreme are the expectations placed upon a modern rugby and what must they go through in order to achieve their targets?
Let's find out.
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