10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
Courtesy of Sunday's thrilling 21-6 win over Australia, Ireland have climbed to third place in the latest IRB World Rankings.
That victory has seen Eddie O'Sullivan's men, who were ranked fifth last week, leapfrog both South Africa and the Wallabies in the latest standings. It is Ireland's highest ranking since October 2003, when they sat on 84.95 Rating points behind New Zealand and soon-to-be World Cup winners England.
The Irish have steadily climbed the rankings list over the past 12 months. A year ago they were positioned in seventh place, the Triple Crown win then boosted them up to fifth and their current form has them gaining on Europe's top team, the second-placed French.
IRB WORLD RANKINGS (As of November 20):
(1) - NEW ZEALAND 94.59 Rating points
(2) - FRANCE 85.86
(3) - IRELAND 84.68
(4) - AUSTRALIA 84.63
(5) - SOUTH AFRICA 83.83
(6) - ARGENTINA 79.70
(7) - ENGLAND 79.55
(8) - SCOTLAND 77.72
(9) - WALES 77.02
(10) - SAMOA 73.86
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