Joe Schmidt’s men started November with a historic 40-29 win over New Zealand in Chicago, which was followed up by a victory over Canada back on home turf the following week.

Four Leinster players got their debuts on the day, with James Tracy scoring one of Ireland’s eight tries.

Despite defeat to New Zealand on Saturday, Ireland moved into 4th in the World Rankings, with South Africa’s defeat to Italy moving them down into 5th.

Despite beating the Springboks for the first time Italy remain in 13th place in the rankings. Italy gained two full ranking points which would have been enough to lift them up one place to 12th in the rankings had Georgia not beaten Samoa 20-16 in Tbilisi. One-hundredth of a ranking point is all that now separates the two sides.

Scotland have hit a five-year high in the rankings and are now in 7th after their win over Argentina.

The Pumas have fallen to 9th and, with their final game this month coming against England, they have a major task ahead if they are to move back into the top eight and give themselves a more favourable seeding when the pools for the 2019 Rugby World Cup are drawn in May of next year.

Ireland face Michael Cheika’s Australia this Saturday in their final game of the Guinness Series, knowing a win will cement their place in the top four of the World Rankings.

Leinster v Northampton