Finland will climb to an all-time high of 92nd when the World Rugby Rankings are officially updated at 12 noon on Monday.

Saturday’s 32-29 win over Austria in Rugby Europe’s Conference 2 North sees them jump five places – above Costa Rica, Rwanda, Norway, Mauritius and Pakistan – after picking up 1.92 points to boost their overall rating to 30.99.


Winger Dario Forneris was the star of the show in Vienna with a hat-trick of tries as the visitors just about withstood a late comeback from Austria to register their second victory in three attempts this season following an earlier win over Norway and a defeat to table-topping Latvia. 

Austria are rooted to the bottom of the table having failed to win any of their first three games of the season, and will tumble down the rankings to 84th.

A try from number eight Wertii Bask and a quickfire double from Forneris, all converted by centre Jussi Viljanen, who had opened the scoring with a penalty, saw Finland storm into a 24-0 lead inside the first half an hour.

But Austria made it a two-score game at the break thanks to Maximilian Büttner’s try and five points from the boot of fly-half Maximilian Navas Penaherrera.

Shortly after the restart flanker Frederic Olivanti pulled another five points back for the hosts but when Forneris completed his treble and Viljanen slotted his second penalty, the game looked up.

Trailing 32-15, Austria dug deep and responded with two quickfire converted tries to bring about a grandstand finish. They pressed hard for a fifth try in the closing 12 minutes, but Finland held firm to win the first-ever international between the sides.

The weekend's other international, Qatar's 77-0 defeat of Jordan in the Asia Rugby Championship Division III West in Doha, had not impact on the rankings as neither are World Rugby member unions.

Photo: Lichtblau-Zakrzanska