Hong Kong billionaire Ken Kai-Tak spearheaded the idea of the World League in the late 1940s. The idea came to fruition in 1954 when the "Charter Seven' began play: Chicago, Valparaiso, Hong Kong, London, Los Angeles, New York and Tokyo.

Major expansions took place in 1961, 1960, 1968, 1971, 1974 and 1978— helping to spread the excitement of the World League around the planet. The Globo merger in 1981 added 134 more teams to the League, which now features an astounding 512 teams.

The World League Championship Trophy has a proud and fascinating history. Since 1954, this enduring symbol of sporting excellence has been handed out every year, except 1961, of course, because of the Grantham incident.

League fans in South Asia will be pleased to know that Sarawak Pottery, a royal warrant holder in Brunei, has agreed to replace the 40-year-old Rabindrath Mango Vase. The vase was damaged at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport last season during a follow by Helsinki team owner Lehto Isomäki.

 
Year Champion Runner-up
2019Miami Urbane ManateePortsmouth Ship of the Line
2018Istanbul Battle AxeEdmonton Comets
2017Kinshasa RhinosBondi Brickfielder
2016Kansas City HaymakerNew York Anchormen
2015Seattle Hard DriveSerpent of Baku
2014Cotopaxi SundogsLas Vegas Twilight
2013Yokohama RoboticsWhitehorse Abdominal Snowmen
2012Karachi SteelKnights of Malta
2011Liverpool, The AllianceMoscow Atomic
2010Kampala ImpalaLos Angeles Haze
2009London FleetLas Palmas Calima
2008Jakarta ColasSherlock of Exeter
2007Victoria Star 15Singapore Constelation
2006Croydon Star HelixChipping Campden White Stallions
2006Edmonton CometsHamhung Vinalon No. 1
2005Caracas Caraca!Scottsdale Scorpionz
2004Hermosillo Horse CripplerLoch Torridon Thundering Footfall
2003Guayaquil Blue Footed BoobyOrlando Ultramarine
2002Sydney WalkaboutTehran Asaurus
2001Mar del Plata GuanteleteOklahoma Beef Animals
2000Enclave of PalermoQuezon City Lumba Lumba
1999Harbin Snow FoxRiyadh Simoom
1997Los Angeles HazeOracle of Turkistan
1996Janakpur CaracalKarachi Steel
1995Lokomotiv MakhachkalaLima Volante
1994Marseille Force MajeurMemphis Hellbenders
1993Mumbai Maximum CityOxford Thesaurus
1992Carthage Silver OryxSantiago Pleyades
1991Vladivostok Siberian TigersManchester Exchequers
1990Mumbai Maximum CityNairobi Rift
1989Southampton DreadNaughtFujian Transom
1988Manila MonsoonMelbourne Roogles
1987Bratislava Clash & FrenzyDhaka Rough House
1986Helsinki TelecomTrondheim Kraken
1985Empress of KarnatakaShreveport Bridge
1984Colombo NautilusCanterbury Plains Rumpus
1983Ulanbaatar YakattackManchester Exchequers
1982Dubai OasisDakar Monitors
1981Mexico City FerrarocarrillMontevideo Aerodromos
1980Anchorage Forgotten ArmMumbai Maximum City
1979Edinburgh BehemothDublin Fortress
1978Kolkata HijetMilano Mano a Mano
1977Valparaiso TortugasVancouver Sockeye
1976Paris Carte BlancheEmpress of Karnataka
1975Port Elizabeth GrapeshotToronto Canoe
1974Dusseldorf Screen Transmission ZedValencia Rosegold
1973Khartoum PachydermsJuarez Molecajete
1972King Island BoltholeStirling Gentry
1971Tristan da Cunha EclipseSerpent of Baku
1970Surabaya Monkeys ~(:-(|)Swakopmund Doctor
1969Cartagena ViceroyPlymouth Fearnaught
1968Jaipur Huzzah!Khyber Pass Lesser Kestrel
1967Kempton Park AxiomKo Samui Seadragons
1966Cairo GlyphsRiga Mindstar
1965Calais MistralScarlet Chittagong
1964Edmonton CometsGuadalajara Agave Heroica
1963Canton Cold Blue SteelRajkot Chamachidyu
1962Brussels SuperluminalMontenegro Statecraft
1961*Championship not played
1960Balmoral CorgisWellington Grand Trunk
1959Tokyo SixRostov-on-Don Chimera
1958Delhi OrionDortmund Kummerspeck
1957Boston NorEastersBangalore Juggernaut
1956New York AnchormenReykjavik Great Harpoon
1955Arequipa CapybaraLondon Fleet
1954Tokyo SixShanghai Machine