Top 8 Best Rugby Balls (match day, training, budget, kids)!

What Are The Best Rugby Balls?

If you want to take your rugby game to new heights then you need to be using the best equipment. And one crucial piece of rugby equipment is the ball because even front row forwards know you can’t play rugby without a ball!

But finding a high-quality rugby ball is not as easy as it sounds with so many manufacturers and lots of fake reviews out there. That is why we have personally tested over 20 different rugby balls and come up with a list of the top performers.

The best rugby balls are:

  • Mitre Sabre Rugby Training Ball – Great budget option
  • Gilbert G-TR3000 Training Rugby Ball – Amazingly durable
  • Pro Impact Match Rugby Ball – Professional quality
  • Gilbert G-TR4000 Training Rugby Ball – Best training ball
  • Optimum Cartoon Character Rugby Ball – Great for kids

Rugby balls that round out our top 8 include:

  • Centurion Nero Trainer Rugby Ball – Awesome grip
  • Gilbert USA Official Replica Rugby Ball – Support Team USA!
  • Rhino Cyclone – Great all-around rugby ball (grip, feel, and price)

Mitre Sabre Rugby Training Ball – Great Price To Quality Ratio


  • Highly durable rubber design – Expect to gets years of use out of this ball
  • Pimple surface to enhance grip – Your outside backs can’t blame dropped passes on the ball when using the Mitre Sabre. The pimple design provides lots of grip
  • Specially designed training ball – This ball can handle the varied conditions of training. It doesn’t what drills you are doing, what the weather is like, or what surface you are playing on the Mitre Sabre ball is up for the challenge!
  • Suitable for Kids just starting rugby and seasoned adult athletes – This is a great all-around ball that can be used by any rugby player no matter their experience
  • Superior price to quality ratio – You won’t find a ball this well made at this price point!


  • Stitching may split after frequent use – If you are extra rough with the ball the stitching may start ripping
  • The valve is a little sensitive – Be careful when inflating this ball as you could damage the valve

Gilbert G-TR3000 Training Rugby Ball – Will Last Forever


  • Very durable rubber design – This ball will last for years and can easily handle the rigors of rugby training!
  • Water repellent technology – No matter the weather you will be able to spin out wide with this awesome Gilbert training rugby ball
  • Cool camo design – You don’t see too many camo design rugby balls. This unique design is sure to be a big hit with your rugby team
  • Amazing price – Own a world-class Gilbert ball for under $15. Can’t get better than that!
  • Nice feel – Whether you are kicking passing or running with this Gilbert G-TR3000 you will be at home on the rugby pitch.


  • Stitching a little uneven – The stitching is not always perfect on this ball but we haven’t problems with it coming undone
  • Loses air faster than some other balls – Keep your pump handy because you might need to inflate it every now and then

Pro Impact Match Rugby Ball – World-Class Professional Game Ball


  • Superior Surface – The Pro Impact ball is made from a combination of synthetic rubber, cotton, and polyester materials which ensures that it will for many seasons!
  • Great color options – The Pro Impact rugby ball is available in a range of colors including white with blue, white with red and neon yellow!
  • Top of the line design – The Pro Impact rugby ball is lightweight with a great amount of grip and has that sweet spot feel, allowing you to effortlessly punt it down the field or throw a long spiral pass
    Well Constructed – This ball will never lose air thanks to its heavy-duty latex bladder!


  • A little more pricey than other balls
  • Not a household rugby ball brand like Gilbert

Gilbert G-TR4000 Training Rugby Ball – Number 1 Training Ball


  • Hydratec technology – Makes it easy to grip no matter the weather
  • Amazing shape – Perfect oval shape ensures passing and catching this Gilbert rugby ball is super easy!
  • Fine craftsmanship – This Gilbert ball has been hand stitched which makes it very durable
  • TRI grip technology – You won’t be dropping the ball over the try line with this Gilbert rugby ball


  • The edges can wear out after frequent use
  • You need to pump it with air every 3 weeks

Optimum Cartoon Character Rugby Ball – Fun Designs That Kids Will Love


  • Creative designs – You can get this Optimum cartoon ball in all kinds of designs including a tiger, monkey, cow, bee, zebra, and more!
  • Guaranteed to get your kid excited about rugby – Your kid won’t be able to put this unique rugby ball down!
  • Solid amount of grip – You won’t be dropping any passes with this cool rugby ball
  • Easy to pass and run with – Don’t let the funky design fool you this is a lightweight rugby ball that is easy to throw a spiral pass or sprint down the field with


  • Doesn’t offer as much grip as a professional ball
  • Tends to lose air after frequent use

Centurion Nero Trainer Rugby Ball – Lots Of Grip


  • Hand-stitched ball – You can’t beat the craftsmanship of Centurion rugby balls
  • 8 ply thread – Experience extra durability
  • Great price – A budget ball with superior quality
  • Nice feel – It is easy to pass and run with this ball


  • Valve is a little temperamental – Treat the valve with care otherwise you won’t be able to inflate the Centurion rugby ball
  • The ball can be a little slippery in wet weather conditions

Gilbert USA Official Replica Rugby Ball – Show Your Love For Team USA


  • Stays inflated for a long time – With this ball, pump it full of air once and get hours and hours of use from it!
  • Great colors – Support the American national team by proudly sporting the red, white, and blue
  • Great price – Receive a top-of-the-line Gilbert ball for under $30!
  • Lots of grip – This may be a replica ball but it still can be used for training and even games. You won’t have to worry about dropping this rugby ball due to the extra grip.
  • Highly collectible – Gilbert team balls have been known to go up in value so snag it before it is gone forever!


  • Watch out for lumps – this ball can be a little lumpy
  • The stitching is solid but not the best we have seen
  • Not suitable for matches –  better suited as a training ball or for park rugby

Rhino Cyclone – Amazing All Around Ball (grip, stitching, price)


  • Never drop another pass! – This ball is one of the most grippy we have seen
  • Lightweight – Passing this ball is super easy due to the lightweight design
  • Handles the wet weather superbly – We played with the ball in raining and muddy conditions and the ball still had a great feel to it
  • Great for kids and adults – We recommend the size 3 for youngsters while the size 5 is perfect for serious teenagers and adult rugby players
  • Bright colors – If you are training and playing rugby at night you won’t lose sight of the ball thanks to its bright colors


Needs to be pumped regularly – This ball does lose a bit of air and you need to pump it every couple of weeks

Very grippy – While most rugby players appreciate the extra grip some like a smoother ball

Takes a while to pump – The valve isn’t the best so might have to get it a few extra pumps to get it fully inflated

Wrapping Up The Top Rugby Balls

If you want to choose the best rugby ball for your child, team, or yourself then you can’t go wrong picking any of our top 8 rugby balls of 2022:

  • Mitre Sabre Rugby Training Ball – Great budget option
  • Gilbert G-TR3000 Training Rugby Ball – Amazingly durable
  • Pro Impact Match Rugby Ball – Professional quality
  • Gilbert G-TR4000 Training Rugby Ball – Best training ball
  • Optimum Cartoon Character Rugby Ball – Great for kids
  • Centurion Nero Trainer Rugby Ball – Awesome grip
  • Gilbert USA Official Replica Rugby Ball – Support Team USA!
  • Rhino Cyclone – Great all-around rugby ball (grip, feel, and price)


What Is A Rugby Ball Called?

A rugby ball is called a football or simply a footy. There are also some slang words such as pill, rock, potato which vary based on location. In Australia pill is particularly popular slang for a rugby ball.  

What Is The Best Cheap Rugby Ball?

The best cheap rugby ball is the Mitre Sabre Rugby Training Ball. This ball is under $20 and has a great amount of grip, is highly durable, and has a high-quality feel.

Why Are Rugby Balls Called Gilbert?

Rugby balls are not called Gilbert. The Gilbert name you see on the balls is just the name of the manufacturer. Gilbert is one of many rugby manufacturers and balls that are made by other brands that have their own name displayed such as Mitre, Pro Impact, and Adidas.

What Is The Difference Between A Football And Rugby Ball?

The key differences between rugby balls and footballs include:

  • Rugby balls are slightly longer (28cm) than footballs (27cm)
  • Rugby balls are also significantly wider than footballs (77cm vs 72cm)
  • Footballs have pointy tips while rugby balls have much flatter ends

Rugby balls and footballs are very similar but their slightly different proportions result in the balls having a unique shape.

What Size Rugby Ball Do Professionals Use?

Professional rugby players use a size 5 rugby ball. A size 5 rugby ball is 27 cm (11 in) long and has an end-to-end circumference of 77 cm (30 in). A professional rugby ball weighs 460 grams (1 pound).

What Rugby Ball Do The All Blacks Use?

The All Blacks use an Adidas rugby ball. Adidas is the official sponsor of the New Zealand rugby team and they make special balls for the All Blacks to train and play with. The Adidas rugby ball used by the All Blacks is known for being a little lighter than other brands.

What Is The Difference Between A Match And Training Rugby Ball?

A match rugby ball is made of more natural materials including rubber and leather compared to a training ball. A match ball is often slightly heavier and has less grip. Training balls are more durable due to their synthetic materials and have extra grip.

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