More misery for Wallabies
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: The Wallabies will sink to their worst-ever world ranking on the back of their dramatic loss to the All Blacks in Melbourne.
Thursday’s last-minute 39-37 defeat at Marvel Stadium, which secured New Zealand the Bledisloe Cup for a 20th successive year, came with an added dash of pain for the Wallabies with Australia set to drop to ninth on World Rugby’s rankings ladder.
The Wallabies were in eighth following their disappointing loss to South Africa in Sydney, which was already a historic low before the latest worrying mark.
The Australians were ranked world No.2 only six years ago.
Ireland hold down top spot ahead of France and world champions South Africa, with New Zealand in fourth.
The Wallabies also sit below England, Argentina, Scotland and Wales.
Wales are Australia’s chief rivals in the pool stages for next year’s Rugby World Cup in France.
#⃣REACTION: Bernard Foley, at the centre of a controversial ref call in the #BledisloeCup loss, says the @wallabies must re-set and target a breakthrough win at #EdenPark #RugbyChampionship 🏆#RugbyUnion🌍#Rugby 🏉@SanzarTRC 🏅#AUSvNZL 🇦🇺V🇳🇿
— rugby365.com (@rugby365com) September 16, 2022
Despite the fall, coach Dave Rennie’s position is safe until after at least next year’s global showpiece after Rugby Australia chairman Hamish McLennan this week guaranteed the New Zealander’s role.
Rennie has a record of 11 victories, three draws and 14 losses for a winning strike rate under 39 per cent.
But, speaking on the eve of Australia’s latest defeat, McLennan felt the signs were there that the Wallabies were making progress.
The chair wasn’t bothered by the record rankings dip.
“Dave’s done a great job in settling the team down. There’s been real progress that’s been made,” McLennan said.
“The world rankings, you can sort of use them as a data point but everyone in world rugby can see that the Wallabies have come back and are on the move and are heading in the right direction.
“So I take a lot of heart from that.”
The Wallabies face New Zealand again next week in Auckland, where they haven’t won since 1986.
They then embark on a tough Spring tour, with Tests against Scotland, France, Italy and Ireland over consecutive weekends in October and November.