Rugby is played throughout the world and loved by men and women, as well as boys and girls. It is a sport with unique character-building values, such as the principles of camaraderie, respect, teamwork and fair-play. These principles are more important to the player than winning or losing.
The World Rugby Rankings
The World Rugby Rankings is the ranking system used for men’s national teams managed by the sport’s governing body. The ranking is based on their game results, meaning that the teams with the most wins are ranked highest. As in most sports, a point system is used in rugby. A weighting system has been created to determine which matches should get the most points. The most significant matches, where the points are doubled, are the ones in the World Cup Finals. When calculating the rankings, points exchanges occur differently while a team is playing at home. They get three extra points than their current rating, being considered that the crowd and familiarity to the set-up helps the team. They gain few points when winning, and lose more points if they don’t win because of this rule.
New Zealand has been the most consistently ranked number one team since the introduction of the World Rankings system. Their worst ranking was number three, in 2003. Since then, they have been the overall leaders, losing their spot only a few times.
The current number two is Australia. This is also their best positioning, the worst being number six earlier this year. Not being able to overthrow New Zealand, they always come up second in command since 2003.
Wales occupies the third place at the moment, their best positioning being number two earlier this year. They got out of top five twice, the worst positioning for Wales being number ten in 2007 and 2012.
South Africa takes the fourth place at the moment. Unlike Australia and Wales, they know how it feels to be number one, even if for a short time. They stole New Zealands spotlight in 2007-2008 and 2009. The worst ranking they reached was number six, in 2003, 2004 and earlier in 2015. Don’t be fooled though, for they truly are a force to be reckoned with.
We reach the end of our top with Ireland, taking the fifth place. The best position occupied by Ireland was this year, as they stood on the second place for a while. In 2009 they were close to exiting top ten, though, by reaching number nine.
The top fluctuates of course, but these current top five teams are the best out there, all of them deserving the spots they are on. This ranking system has been introduced right before the 2003 Rugby World Cup, the first ranking being issued on 8 September 2003.