Race to top World Rugby Rankings infographic
Graphic shows World Rugby rankings for August 2019.
GN39438

RUGBY

Wales overhaul New Zealand as top-ranked rugby nation

By Chris Dinsdale

September 20, 2019 - November 2, 2019 - Wales has ousted New Zealand as the world’s top-ranked rugby team to end almost a decade at the top for the All-Blacks, a boost for the northern hemisphere side just weeks ahead of the Rugby World Cup in Japan.

With final warm-up matches still taking place, Wales, the reigning Six Nations Grand Slam champions, and New Zealand will battle it out for the top spot right up to the start of the tournament on September 20.

The 2019 Rugby World Cup marks the first time that the showpiece event has been held in Asia, outside rugby’s traditional heartlands.

Host nation Japan will open the tournament against Russia in Tokyo. A total of 48 matches will be played at 12 venues over six weeks, with the final staged at the Nissan Stadium in Yokohama on November 2.

PUBLISHED: 22/08/2019; STORY: Graphic News; PICTURES: Getty Images
Graphic News Standards