Fiji dropped a spot in the IRB World Rankings from 10 to eleven after the narrow 13-18 defeat to Manu Samoa last Saturday at the ANZ Stadium in Suva.
The drop follows recent promotion in rankings from 16th after the 2011 Rugby World Cup steadily moving up to number 10 before the drop in the latest status of the IRB world rankings this week.
Japan moved into number 10 after the 26-23 triumph over Italy with Scotland and Samoa, two of the teams they are paired with in Pool B in England next year, firmly in their sights.
Other than Japan moving into the top ten there was little change to the standings of the leading nations after the latest set of fixtures. Third-placed Australia improved their score by 0.2 of a point after completing a series whitewash of France, while away wins for Scotland (v Argentina) and Samoa (v Fiji) have resulted in net gains of 1.15 and 0.99 points respectively.
New Zealand stay top of the pile on 93.81 points after equaling the record for the number of consecutive Test victories (17) with a comfortable win over England, and South Africa, last-gasp winners over Wales, stay second.
Argentina drop to 12th in the world, their lowest-ever ranking. Italy, meanwhile, remain in 14th but they lose 0.31 of a point after what was a ninth straight defeat.
Wednesday’s IRB Nations Cup win over arch-rivals Russia combined with Canada’s first loss to the USA in eight matches sees Romania swap places with the Maple Leafs to claim 16th place in the rankings. Romania went on to lose their Nations Cup title against Emerging Ireland, but that match did not count towards the rankings.
Uruguay move into 19th place at the expense of Russia after beating the Bears in the first match of the final round of Nations Cup fixtures in Bucharest. Los Teros won 13-6 in what could potentially be a dress rehearsal for the RWC 2015 Repechage final later this year.