While Saturday’s first-ever rugby test between Brazil and Germany was in no way as one-sided as the 7-1 thrashing handed out by the Europeans in the semi-final of last year’s Football World Cup, Germany’s rugby players will no doubt take great satisfaction from Saturday’s 29-12 victory over the South Americans in Blumenau, Santa Catarina, which moves them above Ukraine, Belgium and Kenya in the World Rugby Rankings.
The higher-ranked Germans scored four tries and kept their own line intact to register their first win for nearly a year and a half. It takes them to 27th place in the rankings on the back of a 1.12 points gain.
For Brazil there is much work to do if they are going to turn things around ahead of Friday’s re-match at Pacaembu Stadium in São Paulo. They are now ranked lower than Tunisia, Lithuania and Madagascar after falling three places to 42nd.
Three Dave Harvey penalties kept the Tupis in touch at 12-9 down the break after Germany had scored tries through Rob May and Dale Garner and Raynor Parkinson kicked a conversion.
Parkinson crossed the line himself early in the second half and added a further two points from the tee but Harvey’s fourth penalty ensured there was still only one score in it approaching the hour mark.
Any thoughts Brazil had of making a comeback were ended when Parkinson kicked his first penalty and then converted replacement Pascal Fischer’s late score.
Meanwhile, Andorra’s 22-13 win over Cyprus in the European Nations Cup Division 2B did not affect the rankings as Cyprus are not full members of World Rugby. It did, however, see Andorra leapfrog the Cypriots into third place in the Division 2B standings, where Lithuania are the runaway leaders after a perfect six wins from six record.