Separated from their opponents by 20 ranking places before kick-off, Finland started their Rugby Europe Conference 2 North campaign against Denmark as clear underdogs despite home advantage.
The Danes had also won the two previous test between the countries, putting 50 points on the Finns on each occasion. However, this time around it was Finland who came out on top, 22-18.
The win in Helsinki was worth just over one-and-a-half rating points and lifts Finland above Indonesia and Niue Island into 97th place, while also narrowing the gap between themselves and the Danes, who drop four, to 14 places.
Higher up the Rugby Europe ladder, Lithuania beat Czechia 30-10 in a Trophy encounter between the sides ranked 34th and 35th. With just under a point gained in victory, Lithuania are now just over two-and-a-half points clear of their rivals.
Croatia have moved back into the world’s top 50 as a result of their impressive 40-11 win away to Bosnia and Herzegovina in Conference 1 South, while Norway join Finland at the top of the Conference 2 North standings after a scrappy 9-6 win against Austria in Bergen.
Elsewhere, Bulgaria came away from Serbia with a 35-29 victory which pushes them up four places to 90th, and Ukraine beat Luxembourg 24-13 in the opening match of the Conference 1 North season. The result did not affect the rankings, though, as Ukraine, in 37th place, started the day more than eight rating points better off than their opponents.
Photo credit: Miksu Helsinkirugby
RWC 2019 Tickets
RWC 2019 Official Ticketing site NOW LIVE
Fans can now register interest to apply for Rugby World Cup 2019 tickets