Rugby World rankings permutations

Statto Alert!

Are you a statto who loves figures and stats? Well read on then! A busy weekend of men’s and women’s international matches could have significant impact on the World Rugby rankings. Here is everything you need to know curtesy of World Rugby.

Men’s rankings headlines

·         New Zealand have been number one since 16 November, 2009

·         England and South Africa are the only other teams to occupy top spot

·         Wales could end the weekend as the number one team for the first time

·         South Africa could climb to third for first time since September 2017

·         USA can reach a new high of 11th, while Japan could equal their best of ninth

Women’s rankings headlines

·         New Zealand have been number one since 21 August, 2017 – and 95.11 per cent of the time since the rankings were introduced in February 2016

·         Australia’s highest ranking is sixth, which they occupied from July 2016 to March 2019 bar for a two-week period during Women’s Rugby World Cup 2017

·         Madagascar play first rankings test in Women’s Rugby World Cup 2021 qualifying

The Rugby Championship 2019 – Round 3

AUSTRALIA (6) 81.91 v NEW ZEALAND (1) 91.54

·         New Zealand will surrender top spot if they fail to win and Wales also beat England

·         They could, though, more than double their cushion at the top of the rankings depending on results in Perth, Dublin and London

·         Australia can only improve their ranking if they win by more than 15 points and South Africa lose by the same margin in Argentina

ARGENTINA (10) 76.81 v SOUTH AFRICA (4) 86.30

·         The Springboks could finish the weekend in third place, if they win in tandem with defeat for England and a loss by more than 15 points for Ireland

·         South Africa will drop below England again if both sides win this weekend

·         South Africa can drop to sixth if they lose by more than 15 points and Australia beat New Zealand by the same margin

·         Argentina will climb above Fiji into ninth with victory, even if Fiji also beat Samoa

·         Argentina will slip out of the top 10 if they lose and Fiji and Japan both win

World Rugby Pacific Nations Cup – Round 3


USA (13) 72.53 v JAPAN (11) 76.62

·         The winner will be crowned Pacific Nations Cup champions. USA have never won the title, Japan did outright in 2011 and shared in 2014

·         Japan will climb above Fiji with victory – even if Fiji also beat Samoa

·         Japan can equal their highest ever ranking of ninth if the above happens and Argentina also lose at home to South Africa

·         USA will drop below Italy in defeat, even if the Azzurri also lose to Ireland in Dublin

·         The Eagles could also drop one in victory if Italy beat Ireland – unless they win by more than 15 points

·         USA will climb two places to a new high of 11th if win by more than 15 points and would be higher ranked of the nations with Japan dropping to 12th in this scenario

FIJI (9) 76.98 v SAMOA (16) 69.08

·         Fiji have won the last four meetings since a 30-30 draw in 2015

·         Samoa’s last win in the fixture came at ANZ Stadium in 2014 (18-13)

·         Fiji cannot climb the rankings with victory, but will drop if Japan win or Argentina manage at least a draw against South Africa

·         They could fall as low as 13th with defeat by more than 15 points – something they haven’t suffered since a 27-7 loss to Samoa at RWC 2011 – although this would need Italy to also beat Ireland as emphatically

·         Samoa can climb three places if they win by more than 15 points and USA and Tonga both lose by the same margin.



Women’s test matches

AUSTRALIA (7) 78.68 v NEW ZEALAND (1) 93.88 (Saturday)

·         Six points is the smallest winning margin for New Zealand, 22-16 in Canberra in October 2008. Their biggest is 64-0 back in July 1995

·         Australia have only reached double figures in six of the 17 meetings, including the last three

·         Australia recorded their first test wins on home soil last month, beating Japan 2-0

·         New Zealand cannot improve their rating with an 18th successive win over Australia – but will lose top spot if they suffer a first defeat to the Wallaroos

·         Australia will climb to a new high of fifth with victory, climbing above Italy and USA

·         A draw would be enough to lift Australia above Italy into sixth

Women’s Rugby World Cup 2021 qualifiers (Rugby Africa Women’s Cup)

SOUTH AFRICA (11) 67.98 v UGANDA (44) 38.16 (Friday)

·         South Africa cannot improve their ranking in victory as a result of the 29.82 rating points between the sides before home weighting is factored in

·         Defeat for South Africa would see them drop below Scotland and into 12th

·         Uganda will equal their highest ever ranking of 39th with victory, but could climb as high as 36th depending on the margin of victory and outcome of Madagascar v Kenya


MADAGASCAR (-) 40.00 v KENYA (28) 45.84 (Friday)

·         Madagascar will enter the World Rugby Women’s Rankings with a starting rating of 40.00 points

·         Defeat will see Madagascar occupy 41st place in the rankings unless Uganda win, in which case they will sit 42nd

·         Kenya cannot improve their ranking as a win by more than 15 points would still leave them six hundredths behind Jamaica

·         Kenya will fall between three and five places depending on margin of defeat

·         A Madagascar debut victory will lift them to 33rd or 34th depending on the margin