New Zealand’s historic defeat to Argentina has brought them down to third place in the World Rugby rankings, with world champions South Africa still top of the charts.
The All Blacks lost 25-15 to the Pumas on Saturday in Sydney, in what was their second consecutive defeat in the Rugby Championship. It was also the first time the South Americans had defeated the three-time world champions.
Springboks maintain top spot
Testament to their dominance over the years, third place is the lowest the men from the Land of the Long White Cloud have ever been ranked since the ranking system was established.
Jumping up a spot to second place are 2019 Rugby World Cup runners-up England, while title-holders South Africa maintain top spot despite not playing any internationals since their hoisted the Webb-Ellis trophy in Tokyo over a year ago.
The Springboks are not participating in the ongoing Rugby Championship, with the All Blacks, the Wallabies and the Pumas battling it out for top honours.
Tough period for the All Blacks
In the current standings, Ian Foster’s men remain first despite losing two of their three matches so far.
Under the new coach, New Zealand have won two of their five matches. These both came against Australia, who avenged one of those defeats in the second of two back-to-back Rugby Championship fixtures before Argentina made history in Sydney over the weekend.
Another big move in the rankings has seen the Pumas leapfrog a struggling Wales side, who have also had a change at the helm with long-time mentor Warren Gatland stepping down before Wayne Pivac took over.
The South Americans have climbed up to the top eight, replacing the Dragons, who slipped to ninth – their lowest ranking since 2012.
Latest Word Rugby rankings
1. South Africa (94.20 points)
2. England (88.42)
3. New Zealand (88.17)
4. France (84.59)
5. Ireland (84.57)
6. Australia (83.86)
7. Scotland (82.28)
8. Argentina (80.31)