Disney-owned ESPN has furthered its push into sports outside North America by announcing today that it has bought rugby website

The purchase follows hot on the heels of ESPN's June purchase of, the world's largest specialist cricket site.

The fee for the purchase was not disclosed However, it was nicely timed as the Rugby World Cup begins in France next month.

"Rugby has a global fan-base," said Russell Wolff, ESPN executive vice president and managing director, ESPN International.

"This acquisition complements our coverage of rugby across our other platforms in key territories, and is a natural next step for us following our acquisition of in June and the launch of French, German, Spanish and Italian versions of Serving sports fans online around the world is clearly a focus of ours."

ESPN holds broadcast rights to show the competition throughout Latin America. It also hold rights to show some Europe's premier club rugby competitions throughout Latin America, Australia, New Zealand, the Middle East and North Africa.

Paul McFarland, managing director of Scrum Ltd, added: "ESPN has been a leader in sports media and an innovator in online sports content for years. I am convinced that ESPN is the right place to take to its next stage of development."

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