Boks inch closer to No 1 spot

Jean de Villiers (File)
Jean de Villiers (File)
Cape Town - The Springboks may have failed to get the bonus point in their 28-8 win over Australia in the penultimate round of the Rugby Championship on Saturday at Newlands, but they have narrowed the gap to New Zealand at the top of the IRB world rankings.

According to the IRB website, the Springboks, who must now beat New Zealand at Ellis Park in Johannesburg on Saturday with a bonus point AND deny their visitors a bonus point to win the title, closed the gap by just over three tenths, but still trail the world champions by 3.23 rating points.

Australia’s fourth defeat of the Rugby Championship means they now sit less than two points above fifth-ranked France as they travel to Argentina to face the Pumas in the battle to avoid the wooden spoon.

New Zealand’s 33-15 victory over Argentina in La Plata had no impact on the rating of either team as a consequence of the 15.66 rating points and nine places separating the two nations.

Top 10 in the latest IRB rankings:

1. New Zealand 92.07
2. South Africa 88.84
3. England 85.76
4. Australia 83.34
5. France 81.59
6. Wales 81.36
7. Samoa 80.42
8. Ireland 79.58
9. Scotland 76.95
10. Argentina 76.41
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