Ahead of England's Rugby World Cup final, one East London club, Wanstead RFC, is already seeing the benefits of the country's successful run in Japan, with more parents clamouring for their kids to play the sport, writes Liz Calvert.

The Rugby Football Union, the sport’s governing body in England, said clubs across the country have seen an increase in new members during the World Cup, which culminates this Saturday when England take on South Africa.

There are 150 clubs in London, and many of them are based in East London. The West Essex area also boasts a range of its own.

Wanstead has fielded some 10 enquiries from parents wanting to get their children playing rugby in the last two weeks, more than the one a week it would typically get.

Terry Teale, the chairman of ‘mini’ Rugby, anticipates a rush of interest after Saturday, particularly if England lift the cup.

“We are training the next generation of England rugby players right here in East London and Essex, in clubs that can be at the heart of their community,” he said. “And we welcome other kids to come down and see this great sport.”

Rugby clubs typically run teams that cater for both genders and go from senior players all the way down to Under-5s.

The East London and West Essex areas aren’t new to rugby. Wanstead is almost 130 years old, while Hackney’s first rugby club was founded in 1879 as Upper Clapton. England’s most-capped rugby player, Jason Leonard, played for his hometown Barking.

Rugby is reflecting the changes in East London and Essex with more multi-cultural teams.

When Dan Loyal grew up in Manor Park he didn’t view rugby as a sport open to Asians like himself. Now both his boys play at Wanstead and a third of the Under-11 team that he coaches is of Asian extraction, he said.

“In recent years, it has really changed,” he said.

This Saturday most clubs will be showing the match, with some opening their doors to the general public.