The 10 heaviest players at the Rugby World Cup, and their biggest hits of all time


  • The Rugby World Cup in Japan kicked off earlier this month and runs until November 2.
  • The tournament plays host to 20 of the world's finest rugby nations, as well as some of the biggest, strongest, and toughest men on the planet — as well as the heaviest.
  • We've listed the 10 heaviest players at the tournament alongside some of their most devastating (and sometimes comical) moments. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The Rugby World Cup.

The quadrennial event where the world's 20 best rugby nations, as well as some of the biggest, strongest, and toughest men from across the planet, come together to battle it out for the sport's most sought after prize — The Webb Ellis Cup.

Read more: Here's everything that's happening at the Rugby World Cup, and how to watch it live online

Most, if not all, of the players who travelled to Japan fall into the above categories of big, strong, and tough — but none more so than these 10 powerhouses.

Here are the heaviest players at this year's tournament, ranked in ascending order, along with some of their most explosive (and occasionally hilarious) moments. 

=7: Zane Kapeli — Tonga (287lbs/130 kg)

Zane Kapeli

Getty/Phil Walter

You most likely won't recognise Tonga's Zane Kapeli from the above photo, seeing as he's grown himself a huge afro for this year's tournament. 

One man who will recognise Kapeli, however, is England's Billy Vunipola, who found himself on the end of a crunching tackle from the loose forward during the two nation's World Cup opener. 

See Kapeli's monster hit here:

 

=7: Konstantin Mikautadze — Georgia (287lbs/130kg)

Konstantin Mikautadze

Getty/Damien Meyer

At 287 pounds and over 6 ft 6" tall, Georgia's Konstantin Mikautadze is a real man mountain.

Unsurprisingly, such physical attributes make him a dominant force in the scrum, where he's proven himself to be indispensable for his country and his clubs — most recently French side Montpelier Herault — over the last near decade. 

=7: Paul Alo-Emile — Samoa (287lbs/130kg)

Paul Alo-Emile

Getty/Pascal Guyot

Born in New Zealand, Alo-Emile went on to represent Australia as both a schoolboy and at U20s levels, however in 2017, the now 27-year-old decided to pledge his allegiance to Samoa.

It's proven a wise a decision for both him and his country, with the 287 pound Stade Francais prop emerging as a key figure for the Samoans in their march to the World Cup.

 

=7: Atu Moli — New Zealand (287lbs/130kg)

Atu Moli

Getty/Matia Delacroix

In February last year, Atu Moli sustained an injury whilst playing for former side the Chiefs that had doctors fearing they may have to amputate his leg, according to Stuff NZ.

However, after recovering from the setback, Moli was called up to the New Zealand squad for the first time in July, and subsequently the World Cup roster just a few months later.

He recently signed for the Tasman Mako ahead of the 2019/20 season.

Watch Moli in action here:

 

=4: Rhys Carre — Wales (291lbs/132kg)

Rhys Carre

Getty/David Fitzgerald

Rhys Carre was a surprise call up to Wales' World Cup squad.

But while surprising, it certainly wasn't unwarranted.

The 21-year-old (if you can believe that) established himself as a regular for the Cardiff Blues last season, before being picked up by Premiership champions Saracens in the summer. 

Watch his welcome video, including some big hits, here:

 

=4: Latu Talakai — Tonga (291lbs/132kg)

Latu Talakai

Getty/Phil Walter

Talakai represents Tonga internationally, but plays club rugby in New Zealand for Northern District side Eastwood.

The club, whose hilarious club song includes references to "beer," "arses," and not giving "a f—" has a track record of producing international rugby stars — the most recent of whom is Talakai, who made his Tonga debut in 2017 against Wales. 

Talakai's not singing, but take a listen here:

 

=4: Taniela Tupou — Australia (291lbs/132kg)

Taniela Tupou

Getty/Dan Mullan

The "Tongan Thor" made a name for himself as a youngster when he became an internet sensation after footage emerged of him trampling over his competitors as a schoolboy in New Zealand.

Since turning professional in 2015, Tupoa has assumed the much less conspicuous role of prop forward, but that still hasn't stopped him menacing opponents with his superhero-esque strength and power.

This video is a must watch:

 

3: Levan Chilachava — Georgia (293lbs/133kg)

Levan Chilachava

Getty/Levan Verdzeuli

Levan Chilachava is an imposing figure on the rugby pitch for his opponents.

But it turns out the Georgian powerhouse can be just as scary for his teammates too, after the 28-year-old posted a hilarious video to Instagram on Sunday in which he jumped out of a bin to frighten hooker Vano Karkadze. 

Well played, Levan. 

Watch the Georgian's prank here: 

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2: Tomas Francis — Wales (298lbs/135kg)

Tomas Francis

Getty/David Rogers

Wales' Tomas Francis holds a degree in mechanical engineering.

But while he might not use his qualification in the literal sense, the big man can certainly engineer himself around the scrum.

The tighthead prop is a key figure for the Exeter Chiefs — whom he helped lift the Aviva Premiership in 2017 — and for his country.

Wales, the current Six Nations champions, kicked off the World Cup with a 43-14 victory over Georgia.

1: Ben Tameifuna — Tonga (333lbs/151kg)

Ben Tameifuna

Getty/David Rogers

Good luck stopping this man. 

Weighing in at 333lbs (151kg), Tonga's Tameifuna is comfortably the heaviest man at the tournament.

Unsurprisingly, "Big Ben" has already become a crowd favorite in Japan, however unfortunately for the fans, and of course for Tameifuna, it looks likely Tonga will be going home early after an opening game defeat to England. 

This one's got to hurt:

 

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