Wallabies Slip In World Rankings

The Wallabies have slipped to an equal lowest ever spot of fifth in the World Rugby Rankings following last weekend’s 26-13 loss to Ireland in Dublin.   

Australia will wrap up its European Spring Tour against the English in Twickenham on Sunday one spot below the hosts, matching the Wallabies’ worst-ever mark since the rankings were introduced in 2003.

In further bad news, the Wallabies will be without centre Tevita Kuridrani, who sustained a minor ankle injury in the loss to Ireland.

Kurtley Beale is expected to step in for Kuridrani after providing a solid performance during last weekend’s second half and had a potentially match-winning pass to Matt Toomua waved off for going forward.  

The in-form Brumbies star will be missed as Australia looks to recover from back-to-back losses while England is coming off a 28-9 win against Samoa.

“You can certainly treat this match as a warm-up game for that World Cup match,” Adam Ashley-Cooper said on Tuesday.

“The reality is that’s seven or eight months away, but we do have England at Twickenham in the World Cup so this gives us a really good understanding of what it’s going to be like.”

Australia’s lone loss of last year’s European tour came against England in a controversial 20-13 result.

“There were a couple of decisions at the end that didn’t go our way but that’s life,” Ashley-Cooper said of last year’s Test.

“It was a hard and physical encounter like they always have been when I’ve been here.

“They’ve always come down to five or seven points and that game was no different.

“It’s the last game of our year and it’s really important we finish on a good note before we pick up together again prior to a rugby World Cup.”

Photo: Ian Walton/Getty Images.