Scotland have edged back into the top 10 of the IRB World Rankings thanks to their 30-29 win over Italy at the weekend.
A last-gasp Al Strokosch try snatched victory in Pretoria and enabled the Scots to climb two places to ninth, while the Azzurri remain unchanged in 12th spot.
Scotland are still more than 2.5 rating points behind eighth-placed Ireland, who were not in action at the weekend.
Argentina (now 10th) and Tonga (11th) are the casualties of Scotland’s success as they each drop one place down the table, despite the Pumas’ 29-18 win over lower-ranked Georgia.
Scotland, Fiji and Japan were the main movers in a closely-contested section of the rankings table, with less than 5.5 rating points between the teams placed nine to 15.
South Africa’s 56-23 win over Samoa slightly improves their points total but leaves the Springboks unchanged in second.
Pacific Islands on the move
Although Samoa were unable to post a first-ever win over the Springboks, they do remain seventh in the standings, albeit with a slightly lower rating.
The All Blacks’ 24-9 win over France in front of a packed Yarrow Stadium in New Plymouth means the teams remain first and fifth with their points totals unchanged.
Fiji notched two wins from two in a week of Pacific Nations Cup action, accounting for USA (35-10) and Tonga (34-21) to rise one place to 13 in the world.
Fiji’s rise shunts Canada down two places to 15th after Canucks lost 16-13 to Japan. The Brave Blossoms followed up their Canadian success with victory over USA, 38-20, to rise one place to 14th.
Kenya winners in Africa
In Kampala, Kenya ran out 19-13 winners over Uganda in the second leg of the Elgon Cup to reclaim the title on aggregate. Uganda won the first leg 17-16, giving a final tally of 35-30 in Kenya’s favour.
The resulting effect on the rankings means Kenya climb three places to 37th and Uganda drop back to 41st in the world.
Ivory Coast’s political capital, Yamoussoukro, was the scene for Africa Cup Group C action over the weekend.
The home side posted a 77-3 win over Zambia but it leaves the sides unchanged in 45th and 75th respectively. However, Nigeria’s 63-3 win over Mauritius saw the latter side drop two places to world No.98, ahead of only Greece and Finland.
The IRB World Rankings are published every Monday at midday UK time.
- Monday 30 September 2013 - World Rankings
South Africa inch closer to rankings top spot
- Friday 27 September 2013 - World Rankings
Second within reach for Australia in rankings
- Monday 16 September 2013 - World Rankings
New Zealand increase rankings cushion at top
- Thursday 12 September 2013 - World Rankings
Ranking top spot at stake in Auckland