Boks close gap on All Blacks

Date published: September 9 2013

There may be no positional changes in the latest World Rankings, but South Africa have closed the gap on New Zealand at the top.

There may be no positional changes in the latest Rankings, but South Africa have closed the gap on the All Blacks at the top after beating Australia.

South Africa's first win in Brisbane for more than 40 years has seen them cut New Zealand's cushion from 4.35 rating points to 2.7 ahead of the meeting between the two sides at Eden Park.

New Zealand are also unbeaten in the Rugby Championship but the 28-13 win over tenth ranked Argentina had no impact on their rating of 91.64, a result of the 15.23 points separating the two teams before kick-off in Hamilton.

A third successive defeat in the competition means Australia have seen their advantage over fifth-ranked France reduced to just over two rating points and leaves the Wallabies in danger of slipping another place to equal their lowest position since the rankings were introduced.

The weekend's other match, in Division 1B of the European Nations Cup 2014, saw Poland overcome Sweden 30-9 in Warsaw. However, the match, which forms part of the region's qualifying process for World Cup 2015, resulted in no positional changes for either side.

Poland did improve their rating by 0.69 but still remain 27th, just over three tenths behind Germany. Sweden, ranked five places lower, have seen their advantage over Brazil beneath them cut to just one hundredth of a rating point.

IRB World Rankings

1(1) New Zealand 91.64
2(2) South Africa 88.94
3(3) England 85.76
4(4) Australia 83.67
5(5) France 81.59
6(6) Wales 81.36
7(7) Samoa 80.42
8(8) Ireland 79.58
9(9) Scotland 76.95
10(10) Argentina 76.41

With thanks to the IRB