Japan jump into world top ten
June 23, 2014
Japan's win over Italy at the weekend was enough to lift them into the top ten of the IRB World Rankings, with Fiji, who lost to Samoa, and Argentina, beaten by Scotland, slipping down the table. Japan's good run of form now extends to ten back-to-back wins.
Other than Japan taking Fiji's place in the top ten there was little change to the standings of the leading nations. Third-placed Australia improved their score by 0.2 of a point after completing a series whitewash of France, while away wins for Scotland and Samoa boosted their positions.
New Zealand stay top of the pile on 93.81 points after equalling the record for the number of consecutive Test victories with a comfortable win over England, and South Africa, last-gasp winners over Wales, stay second.
Argentina drop to 12th in the world, their lowest-ever ranking. Italy, meanwhile, remain in 14th despite their ninth straight defeat.
Further down the rankings, Romania, victors over Russia, leapfrog Canada who were beaten by USA.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Bows, bouts and big hits, launches, lineouts and late tries. Here's the finest snaps from the last seven days: it's Week in Pictures time
The Scotland coach enters his first Six Nations with at least one familiar face to look to for inspiration - Joe Schmidt. He chats to Tom Hamilton
Italy coach Jacques Brunel spoke to ESPN ahead of his final season as Italy coach and tells of his desire to experiment and evolve
"There's no bull with me, I just tell it straight." Tom Hamilton talks to Warren Gatland in an exclusive interview