Find out what's inside the new-look Rugby World for the 2017-18 season

To mark the start of a new season, Rugby World unveils a new look in the October edition. Not only have we revamped the design but we have introduced new features designed to get you closer to the game’s star players and added more hard-hitting opinion. Find out how to download the digital edition by clicking this link – and here are a dozen reasons to get a copy of the latest issue…

1. New look

The October issue features a fresh design and myriad new features we think you will love. From Inside the Mind to My Day Off, Rugby World has introduced fresh ideas with the aim of taking you closer to the stars than ever before and providing you with an insight into the person as well as the player. There are more exclusive photos and a crisper design too.

2. More opinion

We know you all have views on the game and with so many big issues to debate we have added more opinion-led pieces to the magazine. As well as Stephen Jones’s monthly column and The Rugby Rant, we now have a monthly debate called Face-Off – in this edition we look at the RFU ending contracts for 15-a-side women’s players, with two former England players presenting their sides of the argument – and an agenda-setting piece called What You Should Be Talking About This Month.

3. Club guide

No start-of-season issue of Rugby World would be complete without a club guide and we’ve dedicated a full page to all 26 teams competing in the Aviva Premiership and Guinness Pro14. As well as the lowdown on the ins and outs at each club, we analyse their prospects for this season, highlight a key man and pick out a player to watch.

4. Behind the scenes with the English champions

We have revived an old feature where each month we will visit a club and go behind the scenes. These trips used to be undertaken by Mickey Skinner but Alan Dymock has now taken on the baton and what better place to start our new ‘Welcome to my club’ series than at Sandy Park, home of English champions Exeter Chiefs. Fun, games and beers all feature in Dymock’s day out.

Exeter Chiefs

Chiefs visit: RW’s Alan Dymock enjoys himself at Sandy Park, home of Exeter. Photo: Sam Riley

5. What next for Munster?

They came close to lifting a trophy last season, reaching the semi-finals of the Champions Cup and final of the Guinness Pro14, but ultimately fell short. With director of rugby Rassie Erasmus leaving at the end of the year, what can we expect from the province this season? Tom English gives his verdict.

6. Bootcamp 

Find yourself confused about what you should be doing from a fitness and nutrition perspective? Rugby World is here to help with our handy guide that tells you what exercises you should be doing and what foods you should be eating each month.

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7. The Analyst

In another new feature, former Ospreys and Bristol coach Sean Holley provides in-depth analysis of the world’s top teams. To kick things off, he looks at how Exeter dominate possession, including how they implement ‘latching’.

8. The men leading Scottish rugby forward

Scottish rugby has a few new faces in situ for 2017-18. Dave Rennie has taken over at Glasgow Warriors and Richard Cockerill is in charge at Edinburgh, while new Scotland coach Gregor Townsend is preparing for the first home Tests of his reign. We have the lowdown on the three wise men hoping to take Scottish rugby forward.

Gregor Townsend

On the ball: Gregor Townsend took charge of Scotland in June. Photo: Getty Images

9. Grass-roots rugby

In his latest column, Stephen Jones looks at the problems facing the community game and finds out how the RFU are addressing them. This includes more artificial pitches, varied kick-off times and even a new format of the game.

10. My life in pictures: Toby Flood

Newcastle’s returning hero Toby Flood takes us through the ups and downs of his career with a look through photos from the early days to now.

11. My Day Off… Rob Evans

Rugby World editor Owain Jones takes to the water with Scarlets and Wales prop Rob Evans as he goes fishing for bass. There’s also time to talk about his hopes for the season with both club and country.

Rob Evans

Go fish: Scarlets prop Rob Evans enjoys a day on the water fishing. Photo: Huw Evans Agency

12. Player access

On top of all that we have a host of player features we think you will enjoy:

  • Downtime with Gareth Ansconbe. The Cardiff Blues and Wales back talks about his life off the field.
  • What it’s like to swap rugby for NFL. Former England Sevens player Alex Gray explains why he’s switched from rugby to American Football and reveals how he’s adapting to a different code.
  • Inside the Mind of Adam Jones. Coaching, best mates and Lego all come up in conversation with the Harlequins, Wales and Lions prop.
  • Jack Conan. The Leinster back-row excelled for Ireland in the summer and is now ready to battle Jamie Heaslip for both the blue and green No 8 shirt.
  • Rising stars. Get to know Marcus Smith, the 18-year-old Harlequins fly-half who has been training with Eddie Jones’s England, and Darcy Graham, an up-and-coming Scottish outside back.
  • Club Hero Michael Rhodes. The Saracens flanker talks about life with the European champions.
  • Petrus du Plessis. The London Irish prop on why he thinks his new club will avoid relegation and his alter ego Borislav.

We hope you enjoy the new-look Rugby World and please let us know what you think so we can continue to develop a great magazine for you.