Ireland have replaced France at the top of the World Rugby Men’s Rankings, powered by Capgemini, following their historic Test series win in New Zealand.
The 32-22 series-clinching victory over the All Blacks on Saturday added 1.26 rating points to Ireland’s total which now stands at 90.03 points, just under two-thirds of a point more than France who are on 89.41.
It is the second time Ireland have been number one having held the position for a two-week period in September 2019. That was also the year that they last broke through the 90-point barrier.
Despite no end of twists and turns in the other fixtures between the best teams in the southern and northern hemispheres, that was the only positional change in the top 10.
With no rating points on offer for their 30-14 win over Wales, South Africa remain in third, behind Ireland and France and ahead of New Zealand in fourth.
In Sydney, England defeated Australia 21-17 to ensure they remain in fifth and the Wallabies sixth, while Argentina’s last-gasp heroics in beating Scotland 34-31 did not come with any additional reward. Los Pumas stay ninth, below Scotland in seventh and Wales in eighth.
Japan were not in action this weekend but stay inside the top 10 with a two-point buffer over Samoa who moved up two places to 11th following their 23-20 triumph over Fiji in the World Rugby Pacific Nations Cup title decider.
Hosts Fiji drop to 12th with just one place between them and Georgia who backed up their historic success against Italy with a 23-14 victory over Rugby World Cup hopefuls Portugal.
Tonga, whose 39-22 defeat to Australia ‘A’ did not count towards the rankings, benefitted from defeats for the USA and Romania to climb up two places to 16th.
Romania are one place below the ‘Ikale Tahi following their 26-20 reversal at the hands of Uruguay in Montevideo, with los Teros up one to 18th.
Meanwhile, new Rugby World Cup qualifiers Chile are up to an all-time high of 22nd as a result of their dramatic 31-29 win over the USA in Glendale, Colorado.
The victory saw Chile wipe off the one-point deficit from the first leg in Santiago and make it through to next year’s tournament in France as the Americas 2 qualifiers by the narrowest of margins.
Chile’s rise has cost Canada and Namibia a place in the rankings with those two teams now 23rd and 24th respectively.
WORLD RUGBY MEN’S RANKINGS – POWERED BY CAPGEMINI:
Monday, July 18 (Last week’s positions in brackets) –
1(2) IRELAND 90.03 rating points
2(1) France 89.41
3(3) South Africa 88.61
4(4) New Zealand 86.93
5(5) England 86.25
6(6) Australia 82.17
7(7) Scotland 81.93
8(8) Wales 81.28
9(9) Argentina 80.45
10(10) Japan 77.74
11(13) Samoa 75.75
12(11) Fiji 75.08
13(12) Georgia 74.51
14(14) Italy 73.29
15(15) Spain 69.27
16(18) Tonga 67.10
17(16) Romania 66.33
18(20) Uruguay 65.97
19(17) USA 65.17
20(19) Portugal 65.08