Samoa on top 10 of World Rugby’s official rankings


Samoa’s narrow win over Japan away from home means they have broken into the top 10 of World Rugby’s official rankings – and are just one spot behind Wales.

WalesOnline reported that Manu Samoa’s win of 24-22 over the Brave Blossoms in the Pacific Nations Cup on Saturday, July 22, with the match taking a dramatic turn when Japan’s veteran No.8 Michael Leitch was red-carded for a shoulder-to-head tackle while his side was in the lead 10 minutes from half-time.

The game continued to be a tightly-contested battle despite Samoa’s one-man advantage, with Japan’s kicking keeping them in the game before a Samoan try in the 61st minute, and the resulting conversion proved to be the game’s last score.

It means Samoa – who recorded their first win over Japan on Japanese soil since 2012 – will now move up from 12th to 10th in World Rugby’s official rankings, swapping ranking positions with Japan.

The Pacific Island side is now 0.62 points behind Warren Gatland’s Wales, who are ninth in the rankings table.