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Ireland could fall two places in rankings with loss to Scots

Ireland could fall two places in the World Rugby Rankings if they lose to Scotland in their final Autumn Nations Cup match.

Andy Farrell’s side are currently in fifth place in the official rankings after seeing off Georgia at the Aviva Stadium.

However, Ireland put in a lacklustre performance in that game, and will have to improve if they hope to beat Gregor Townsend’s Scotland.

The Scots have been in decent form since the resumption of internationals in late October, winning three of their last four matches.

Stuart Hogg and co. will be champing at the bit to get revenge against the Irish, who they’ve lost to in their last four meetings, and should be well rested after their game against Fiji was cancelled at the weekend.

Ireland will be buoyed by the news that captain Johnny Sexton is due to return from a hamstring injury and will likely inject some much needed attacking ability into the Irish back line.

If Scotland win by any amount at the Aviva Stadium this Saturday and Australia defeat Argentina in Sydney, Ireland will fall from fifth to seventh place in the rankings.

Should Scotland win and Australia lose to Los Pumas, Ireland will drop one place to sixth in the World Rugby Rankings.

If Ireland win they will close the gap on France in fourth place, but will not move up in the rankings, even if they are to beat the Scots by 15 or more and the French lose heavily.

Meanwhile, Wales are in danger of falling to 10th place in the world rankings, should they lose to Italy in the final Autumn Nations Cup appearance.

That would make it the joint-lowest position that the Welsh have ever occupied in the world rankings, last falling to 10th after they were dumped out of the 2007 Rugby World Cup by Fiji in the pool stages.

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