With the rugby season reaching a thrilling climax, which pub can claim to be the best in the country for fans of the game?

Fans across the country have nominated their favourites and are now being asked to choose between five finalists.

The Aberdeen Standard Investments Melrose Sevens rugby pub of the year competition winner will be revealed before the tournament gets underway on April.

The five in the pack looking to grab the prize are:


Athletic Arms, Edinburgh



Also known locally as The Diggers, the pub is a dropkick from Murrayfield, and a popular place for fans to head for a pie and a pint before and after the action.


Merchants Inn, Rugby

This cask ale haven is just metres from the pitch at Rugby School where William Webb Ellis picked up the ball and ran.


The Palmeira, Hove

In the words of the judges: "Great pub, great service, tasty food and good choice of beer." Sound all right to us.


The Cabbage Patch, Twickenham




One of the most famous rugby pubs in the land. With its location near to England's rugby HQ it is in the perfect spot but it doesn't rest on its laurels, providing fans with great food, beer, and a team that know their rugby inside out.



The Buccleuch Arms Hotel, Moffat

A second Scottish finalist with "log fires, great food, bespoke gin and beers to die for". Judges say it is a worthy contender.


Douglas Hardie, president of Melrose Rugby Club said: "For rugby fans who aren't able to travel to the Borders to cheer on the home and international teams, many will savour match day action in bars or pubs. In our quest to find Britain's top rugby pub, fans have told us that a great range of beer, delicious food, roaring fires, friendly staff and a buzzing atmosphere are among the qualities that make their locals special.

"However, just like the Melrose Sevens, there can only be one winner of Britain's best rugby pub, and now it's over to the public to pick their favourite from our shortlist."

The winner will be chosen by fans themselves by voting on Facebook or Twitter. and will be announced next week.