It will be seventh in the world hosting the number one-ranked team at the Aviva Stadium next Sunday when the GUINNESS Series wraps up with the eagerly-awaited meeting of Ireland and New Zealand.
Ireland have falled one place in the latest IRB World Rankings following their 32-15 defeat at home to Australia and Wales’ 40-6 triumph over Argentina on Saturday.
The first loss of Joe Schmidt’s coaching tenure means the men in green slide from sixth to seventh, swapping places with Wales who beat Argentina at the Millennium Stadium to record their first November international victory in four years.
Otherwise the top 10 is unchanged, with the Pumas holding their position of 10th despite the defeat in Cardiff.
Ireland’s next opponents, New Zealand, marked four years at the summit of the IRB World Rankings by consolidating their top spot with a 30-22 victory over England.
The All Blacks have occupied the number 1 position since November 16,2009 and for more than 80% of the time since the rankings were introduced in October 2003. The Twickenham success means they now boast 93.81 rating points.
This means a slight increase in their cushion over South Africa – pushing it beyond five rating points – after the Springboks ran out 28-0 winners over Scotland yesterday. This latest win increases South Africa’s advantage over England in third to more than more than three points.
England have now finished their November campaign and are in danger of losing that third position, sitting as they do just five hundredths above Australia, who have two matches remaining after beating Ireland in Dublin.
France’s 38-18 win over Tonga in Le Havre has no bearing on either side’s rating points as a result of the eight places and more than eight rating points separating the two teams. However, Tonga do climb one place to 12th as a result of Fiji’s 37-31 defeat in Italy.
IRB WORLD RANKINGS (as of Monday, November 18):
Last week’s positions in brackets –
1(1) New Zealand 93.81 rating points
2(2) South Africa 88.77
3(3) England 85.70
4(4) Australia 85.65
5(5) France 81.44
6(7) Wales 80.98
7(6) IRELAND 79.33
8(8) Samoa 79.24
9(9) Scotland 76.99
10(10) Argentina 75.23
11(11) Italy 74.34
12(13) Tonga 73.21