Springboks safe in second

All the IRB world ranking permutations for this weekend's matches.

– Regardless of results from the opening weekend of June internationals, the All Blacks cannot be shifted from top spot, while the Springboks, who play a non-cap match against the World XV on Saturday, are safe in second.

– An England victory against the All Blacks would relegate the Wallabies from third to fourth even if Australia beat France. Should France prevail, they could potentially jump from seventh to fifth at the expense of Ireland and Wales.

– To hold on to fifth place, Ireland need to beat the Pumas in Argentina – something they have failed to do since 1952. Argentina’s place in the Top 10 will start to look perilous if an Ireland win is combined with victories for Samoa and Scotland, in Vern Cotter’s first match in charge.

Samoa would return to eighth in the rankings if they beat Tonga in their first match back in the Pacific Nations Cup after a one-year absence, while a win by 15 points or more against the USA in Houston would put 10th-placed Scotland just 0.05 points behind the Pumas on 75.66.

– If the sides immediately above them in the rankings table lose, Tonga could rise by as many as four places from 13th to ninth.

– Fifteenth placed Canada would trade places with Italy – the side immediately above them in the rankings – if they beat in-form Japan and Italy lose to Fiji. An eighth straight win for Japan in tandem with defeat for Scotland and Fiji would put Japan on 74.58 points and in the top 10 for the first time since rankings were introduced. Such a scenario would result in Scotland falling to 12th – their joint worst position – and Fiji plummeting to 14th.

IRB rankings (Top 10)

1. New Zealand 93.81
2. South Africa 89.34
3. Australia 86.88
4. England 85.68
5. Ireland 82.13
6. Wales 80.70
7. France 80.07
8. Argentina 76.44
9. Samoa 75.49
10. Scotland 75.16
Full rankings

Photo: Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

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