Boks and Poms worst of 2006

The Springboks are ranked eighth in the world on 2006 performance, with England even lower at tenth. The Boks have officially slumped to fifth in the world in the IRB rankings.

Saturday’s Bok defeat plunged Jake White’s overall win percentage to 58% in three years after a first year high of 69%.

The defeat against England was also White’s 11th in 12 starts overseas against England, France, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. White in three years has not managed a significant scalp in the northern hemisphere and his overall percentage could be even lower had two soft games not been arranged against Uruguay and the Pacific Islands.

The teams involved in the two major international competitions, as well as Argentina comprise this list of ten seen below, and it doesn’t make for pleasant reading if you’re a supporter of the Springboks or England.

South Africa have only managed to win four games this year, beating Scotland twice and Australia and New Zealand in the home leg of the Vodacom Tri-Nations. With one match remaining, their win rate for the season stands at 36%.

England may lie at the foot of this log, but if they secure a successive victory against the Boks on Saturday, they will leapfrog South Africa and Italy due to the Boks having lost more games. At present, England has won three out of ten games in 2006, and has a success rate of 30%.

World Cup qualifiers have played their part in seeing smaller teams like Italy and Scotland move ahead in the pecking order, but nobody can deny that both South Africa and England have experienced a terrible year both from a statistical point of view and from what has been displayed on the park.

The Boks were unconvincing in their two-match series against the Scotland in June. This is especially disappointing considering the Scots have fallen even further behind the rest of the top tier nations in recent years.

The win against the All Blacks in Rustenburg could be seen as a fortuitous one, with visitors conceding a penalty at the last minute. New Zealand had also secured the Tri-Nations trophy ahead of the South African leg of the tournament, and there were questions around their motivation to perform in this match.

The second installment at Twickenham is thus a crunch one for so many reasons. Andy Robinson will be hoping his charges can pull off another victory, a win that may allow breathing space in terms of his tenure as national coach.

South Africa need a win to salvage something from this wretched season. Along with that is the perpetual search of victory at Twickenham, as well as the elusive big win on foreign soil.

TEAM RECORDS IN 2006:

1. New Zealand: P:12, W:11, L:1, PF:376, PA:205, WR:92%
2. Argentina: P:7, W:6, L:1, PF:225, PA:124, WR:86%
3. France: P:9, W:6, L:3, PF:260, PA:199, WR:67%
4. Ireland: P:10, W:6, L:4, PF:239, PA:216, WR:60%
5. Scotland: P:9, W:5, L:4, PF:191, PA:174, WR:56%
6. Australia: P:12, W:6, D:1, L:5, PF:307, PA:225, WR:54%
7. Wales: P:10, W:3, D:2, L:5, PF:260, PA:292, WR:40%
8. South Africa: P:11, W:4, L:7, PF:233, PA:307, WR:36%
9. Italy: P:11, W:3, D:1, L:7, PF:326, PA:315, WR:32%
10. England: P:10, W:3, L:7, PF:202, PA:270, WR:30%

The official IRB rankings sees Ireland move to third place, their highest ever placing, the Wobblies drop to fourth and the Boks in fifth. England remain seventh, despite the win against the Boks.

Position
(last week) Member Union Rating points
1(1) NEW ZEALAND 94.59
2(2) FRANCE 85.86
3(5) IRELAND 84.68
4(3) AUSTRALIA 84.63
5(4) SOUTH AFRICA 83.83
6(6) ARGENTINA 79.70
7(7) ENGLAND 79.55
8(8) SCOTLAND 77.72
9(9) WALES 77.02
10(10) SAMOA 73.86
11(11) FIJI 73.15
12(12) ITALY 72.20
13(13) CANADA 69.11
14(14) USA 68.73
15(15) ROMANIA 68.37
16(16) TONGA 66.04
17(17) GEORGIA 65.42
18(19) JAPAN 63.83
19(18) URUGUAY 63.45
20(20) RUSSIA 62.82