World rankings: France move above New Zealand into second spot after Six Nations triumph

France have replaced New Zealand in second place in the World Rugby Men’s Rankings after their excellent form in this year’s Six Nations Championship.

With a third of a rating point earned for their 25-13 Grand Slam-winning victory over England in Paris on Saturday night, Les Bleus have 88.88 points compared to the All Blacks’ 88.75.

France are now set for their longest run at number two in the rankings having last occupied the position for one week only back in October 2007.

Closing the gap on the Springboks

Les Bleus have never been at number one but are now only 1.72 points behind South Africa at the top of the rankings.

Six Nations 2022 runners-up Ireland remain in fourth, only a fraction more than half a point away from the All Blacks, following their 26-5 home win against Scotland.

The gap in the rankings between Ireland and fifth-place England is now 3.72 points, while Scotland stay in seventh.

Having lost to Italy on home soil for the first time in history, Wales have dropped below Argentina and are now in ninth place.

Italy’s historic 22-21 win in Cardiff ended a 36-game losing run in the Six Nations but it did not improve their position in the rankings, the Azzurri staying in 14th place.

A higher ranking would have been possible had Georgia lost Sunday’s Rugby Europe Championship 2022 decider to Spain.

However, the Lelos made no mistake against their fellow Rugby World Cup 2023 qualifiers, winning 49-15 to secure a fifth consecutive title.

The victory also moves Georgia above Samoa into 12th place.

Meanwhile, Romania beat the Netherlands 38-12 to secure third place in the Rugby World Cup 2023 qualification table, which means they will compete at the Final Qualification Tournament for the 20th and final ticket to France 2023 in November.

The Oaks swap places in the rankings with the USA as a result of the win in Amsterdam, moving up one from 18th to 17th.

Two Rugby Europe Trophy 2021/22 matches also took place on the weekend with home wins for Germany and Belgium.

Belgium now lead the competition after a 41-11 win over the previously unbeaten Poland but they stay in 27th place, one behind the Netherlands.

Meanwhile, Germany swapped places with Switzerland and are now the higher-ranked of the teams in 31st following their 34-25 victory over the Swiss.

World Rugby Rankings
(Previous position in brackets)

1 (1) South Africa 90.61
2 (3) France 88.88
3 (2) New Zealand 88.75
4 (4) Ireland 88.22
5 (5) England 84.50
6 (6) Australia 83.92
7 (7) Scotland 81.80
8 (9) Argentina 80.58
9 (8) Wales 79.28
10 (10) Japan 78.26
11 (11) Fiji 76.62
12 (13) Georgia 73.78
13 (12) Samoa 73.59
14 (14) Italy 72.33
15 (15) Spain 68.26
16 (16) Tonga 67.72
17 (18) Romania 66.95
18 (17) USA 66.54
19 (19) Uruguay 66.40
20 (20) Portugal 65.72

With thanks to World Rugby

READ MORE: Six Nations Team of the Week: France, Ireland and Italy all well-represented after impressive wins