USA are up to fifth, their highest position in the World Rugby Women’s Rankings powered by Capgemini since November 2019, after opening their account in the Pacific Four Series in New Zealand with a 16-14 win over Australia.

Australia had gone into Sunday’s game with a slender 0.05-point advantage over their opponents, but with just over one rating point riding on the result, USA are now the higher-ranked of the two teams on 77.64 points as opposed to the Wallaroos’ new total of 75.68.

While USA are on the up – also overtaking Italy in the process – that points swing sees Australia dropping down to an all-time low of eighth. In addition to USA, Ireland also benefited from the Wallaroos’ fall by moving up one place to seventh.

In the second game of round two, New Zealand followed up Monday’s win over Australia with a 28-0 win over Canada and that result saw them improve their rating by 0.99 of a point.

While not enough to move them to the top of the rankings, the victory in Auckland saw the Black Ferns close the gap on England. The Red Roses’ lead is still a significant one, however, of 7.21 points.

For Canada, the result saw them fall to fourth place in the rankings, below France.