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What a weekend for international rugby; five test matches decided by five points or less. And plucky Scotland lost to New Zealand by only eight-points in a splendid upset bid.

Game results (Close games)

France 29 – Australia 26 in Paris (Three point’s difference)

South Africa 31 – England 28 at Twickenham (Three point’s difference)

New Zealand 24 – Scotland 16 at Murryfield (Eight point’s difference)

Wales 17 – Fiji 13 in Cardiff (Four points difference)

Argentina 20 – Italy 18 in Genoa (Two point’s difference)

Japan 18 – Romania 13 in Tokyo (Five point’s difference)

Game Results (No so close)

Tonga 40 – USA 12 in Gloucester, UK

Ireland 49 – Georgia 7 in Dublin

Samoa 23 – Canada 10 in Varenne, France

Russia 39 – Hong Kong 27 in Hong Kong

Importance of the Big Games (USA RWC Pool Opponents in Italics and Bold)

France beat a southern hemisphere powerhouse.

England lose 5th test in a row.

South Africa revive after loss to Ireland.

The All-Blacks make 13 changes to hold on against Scotland. (Record: NZ 30 wins to zero for the Scots)

Fiji gave Wales a tough match.

Argentina narrowly victorious over long-time Italian rival.

Samoa too strong for Canada.

Ireland an easy winner over Georgia. (Six tries in victory)

USA Eagles lack second half plan.

Japan hold on against Romania

IRB World Rankings - Changes

  • Ireland vault to 3rd, highest ranking since 2006
  • Australia drop to 4th
  • England fall to 5th
  • Argentina to 9th
  • Japan to 10th
  • Tonga to 12th
  • Fiji to 13th

This weekend

A full assembly of Autumnal test matches as teams prepare for next September’s start of the RWC 2015.